The UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) confirmed this Saturday that among 30 people who developed blood clots after receiving the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, seven have died. However, the medical regulator indicated that the “benefits of the vaccines continue to outweigh the risk.” The Netherlands and Germany suspended the use of this vaccine in people under 60 years of age, while the British Government has maintained that it will maintain it.
The vaccine against Covid-19, developed by the British pharmaceutical AstraZeneca together with the University of Oxford, continues to raise doubts in some countries.
On Friday, the UK medical regulator reported 30 cases of blood clots among recipients of that antidote. And this Saturday he reported that 7 of them died.
“Of the 30 reports up to March 24, 7 unfortunately have died,” the agency confirmed in a statement, quoted by AFP.
According to the country’s Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency, of the 30 affected drug recipients, 22 had a type of blood clot in the brain and eight people showed other clotting problems along with low platelet levels.
However, the MHRA insisted that the benefits provided by immunization injections are much greater than their possible side effects, remembering that there are 30 adverse cases compared to 18 million people who received this vaccine.
“The benefits in preventing Covid-19 infection and its complications continue to outweigh any risks and the public should continue to receive their vaccine when invited to do so,” said June Raine, executive director of the MHRA.
The health authorities have not yet confirmed whether these events show a side effect caused directly by the AstraZeneca vaccine or if they correspond to other health circumstances of those who were affected.
Despite the concerns, the British Government continues to support the use of this antidote, developed in its country and with which it has been able to establish itself as one of the nations that leads immunization programs against the pandemic.
On Wednesday, UK Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick assured that his country is 100% sure of the efficacy of the vaccine and that they will not test it again.
The European Medicines Agency (EMA) also backed its application, stating that experts have not found specific risk factors such as age, gender or medical history.
So far, the authorities have not reported this same type of reaction with another of the most widely used vaccines against the virus, that of Pfizer / BioNTech.
Some countries restrict the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine
The support of the British authorities for the AstraZeneca vaccine contrasts with the decisions made by some countries that stopped immunization with that antidote, while investigations continue, after also reporting cases of people with blood clots after receiving the dose.
The Netherlands became the latest nation on Friday to stop the application of the British antidote to people under the age of 60.
The decision was announced after it became known about five new cases of clotting affecting women between the ages of 25 and 65. One of them died.
Germany ordered the same measure last week, after it reported 31 cases of thrombosis and nine deaths among those vaccinated with the aforementioned drug.
France, Spain and Canada also suspended immunization with AstraZeneca. However, Australia confirmed this Saturday that it will continue to use that injection to inoculate its population. “The risks of serious side effects remain very low,” said Australia’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer Michael Kidd.
In that country, a 44-year-old man was transferred to a Melbourne hospital with coagulation, days after receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine, suffering a severe thrombosis, a condition that prevents normal blood flow through the circulatory system.
In Latin America, this drug continues to be used among the countries that began their immunization programs. Argentina recently announced that it will continue to receive doses of the British antidote.
The World Health Organization has repeated that its use is safe. The European Medicines Agency (EMA), which has also supported its application, is expected to issue new information on this vaccine on April 7.
With Reuters, AFP and local media