Icelandic health authorities have not yet announced whether they will resume use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, despite several other European countries deciding to do so.
Just over a week ago Iceland suspended use of the vaccine, following three incidents in Norway of recipients developing blood clots. Several days later at least 12 countries had temporarily stopped using the AstraZeneca product
However health authorities in France, Germany, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Italy and Spain recently announced that they will resume AstraZeneca inoculations in the coming days, according to RÚV.
The European Medicines Agency stated yesterday that the vaccine is not associated with an increase in the overall risk of blood clots, and that there had been far fewer adverse reactions than should be expected. Around 20 million people in the UK and EEA had received the vaccine as of mid-March, but only 25 cases of blood clots and thrombosis were reported. A causal link with the vaccine is not proven, according to the agency.
Norwegian health authorities have identified specific reasons why the affected individuals showed adverse reactions, and the World Health Organisation has concluded that there are no compelling reasons not to use the vaccine.
Iceland’s Chief Epidemiologist Þórólfur Guðnason said: “You can see in the UK—where 11 million people have been vaccinated with this vaccine—that it seems to be working just fine.”
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