The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has said it remains remains “firmly convinced” of the benefits of AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccine despite several countries suspending its use over blood clot fears.
“We are still firmly convinced that the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine in preventing Covid-19 with its associated risk of hospitalisation and death outweigh the risk of these side effects,” EMA chief Emer Cooke told an online press conference.
“At present there is no indication that vaccination has caused these conditions. They have not come up in the clinical trials and they are not listed as known or expected side effects,” Cooke added.
Clinical trials had shown “very small numbers of blood clot developments”, she added.
The prime minister Boris Johnson also insisted the jab was safe and said: “In the MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency) we have one of the toughest and most experienced regulators in the world
“They see no reason at all to discontinue the vaccination programme… for either of the vaccines that we’re currently using.”
The World Health Organization, which on Monday urged countries to continue using the AstraZeneca vaccine while the investigation was under way, said its expert safety panel was also meeting and expected to publish a statement on Tuesday.
The WHO said that as of March 12, more than 300 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines had been administered around the world with no cases of death found to have been caused by any of them.#
Jemma Lucy ( Editor Newspresslive)