Denmark suspends use of AstraZeneca Covid vaccine

The Oxford-AstraZeneca covid vaccine.

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LONDON — Denmark, Norway and Iceland announced Thursday they will quickly suspend the use of the coronavirus vaccine formulated by AstraZeneca and the College of Oxford.

The Danish Health Authority explained it would quickly prevent utilizing the shot in its vaccination system as a precaution “right after studies of extreme conditions of blood clots in men and women who have been vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccine from AstraZeneca.”

“From this history, the European Medicines Company has introduced an investigation into the AstraZeneca vaccine. One report relates to a dying in Denmark. At current, it can not be concluded irrespective of whether there is a website link concerning the vaccine and the blood clots,” the health authority stated in a assertion.

It did not specify how quite a few stories of blood clots there had been, or in which they experienced originated.

Afterwards on Thursday, the two Iceland and Norway designed equivalent bulletins.

The announcements occur after a equivalent move in Austria at the get started of the week, the place authorities are investigating the dying of one particular person and the sickness of yet another just after they been given doses of the vaccine.

Shares of AstraZeneca on the London market slipped 2.5% on Thursday. The University of Oxford would not comment on the announcement when contacted by CNBC.

A spokesperson for AstraZeneca mentioned the firm was mindful of the statement created by the Danish Health Authority that it truly is at the moment investigating potential adverse results related to the vaccine.

“Affected individual protection is the greatest precedence for AstraZeneca. Regulators have crystal clear and stringent efficacy and basic safety standards for the approval of any new medication, and that involves COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca. The protection of the vaccine has been extensively studied in Stage III scientific trials and Peer-reviewed data confirms the vaccine is normally well tolerated,” AstraZeneca stated in a assertion to CNBC.

Soren Brostrom, director of the Nationwide Board of Health in Denmark, insisted that the 14-day suspension was a precaution when investigations took place.

“It is essential to emphasize that we have not opted out of the AstraZeneca vaccine, but that we are placing it on hold. There is good proof that the vaccine is both equally secure and successful. But each we and the Danish Medicines Company have to respond to studies of feasible major facet results, the two from Denmark and other European countries,” he mentioned.

Austria fears

Austrian health authorities suspended the use of batch ABV5300 of the AstraZeneca vaccine soon after a particular person was diagnosed with numerous thrombosis (development of blood clots in just blood vessels) and died 10 days soon after vaccination, and a further was hospitalized with pulmonary embolism just after currently being vaccinated.

“The latter is now recovering,” the European Medicines Agency mentioned Wednesday.

Even so, the EMA extra that “there is presently no indication that vaccination has brought about these circumstances, which are not listed as facet outcomes with this vaccine.”

The company famous that the same batch ABV5300 was delivered to 17 EU countries and includes 1 million doses of the vaccine.

“Some EU nations around the world have also subsequently suspended this batch as a precautionary measure, though a entire investigation is ongoing. Whilst a good quality defect is regarded as not likely at this stage, the batch excellent is getting investigated,” the EMA mentioned.

It added that its basic safety committee was examining the problem and “investigating the situations described with the batch as properly as all other scenarios of thromboembolic functions, and other conditions connected to blood clots, noted article-vaccination.”

“The information and facts readily available so much indicates that the amount of thromboembolic activities in vaccinated men and women is no better than that witnessed in the standard populace.”

As of March 9, “22 cases of thromboembolic activities had been claimed among the the 3 million men and women vaccinated with COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca in the European Economic Region,” the EMA claimed.

Also on Thursday, European Fee President Ursula Von der Leyen and the Italian Primary Minister Mario Draghi reportedly agreed there was no evidence of a hyperlink between the vaccine and the clots. Von der Leyen reported the European medicines agency experienced released “a even more, accelerated evaluate,” in accordance to Reuters.

U.K. and EU reliance

Late-stage clinical trials found the AstraZeneca-Oxford shot to have an typical efficacy of 70% in protecting towards the virus. A far more new analyze by Oxford researchers identified that the Covid vaccine was 76% efficient at blocking symptomatic infection for 3 months right after a solitary dose, and that the efficacy charge basically rose with a lengthier interval concerning the initially and next doses.

The AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine is currently being relied on intensely in the U.K.’s and European Union’s immunization rollouts.

The U.K. has so considerably vaccinated extra than 22 million men and women with a very first dose of a coronavirus vaccine and is currently only employing the AstraZeneca and Pfizer-BioNTech photographs.