AstraZeneca vaccine hit hard in Europe

“Another blow to European vaccination work!” Less than 24 hours after the Netherlands and Ireland announced the suspension of AstraZeneca vaccination, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Slovenia and other countries successively announced on the 15th and 16th. Introduce the same measures. So far, 20 countries in Europe have announced the suspension of AstraZeneca vaccine. According to the “Wall Street Journal” report on the 16th, the suspension of the AstraZeneca vaccine has dealt yet another blow to the slow vaccination work on the European continent and threatened the credibility of the vaccine itself. The European Medicines Agency announced that it will decide on the 18th whether to “give the green light” to the continued vaccination of AstraZeneca after an emergency meeting.

Agence France-Presse said on the 15th that Denmark, Norway, Bulgaria and other countries announced the suspension of AstraZeneca vaccination last week due to fears that patients may develop blood clots after the injection. On the 15th, a firefighter in the Rhône-Esteau province, France, was hospitalized with arrhythmia after the first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine. President Macron immediately announced the suspension of the vaccination in the afternoon. He also said that “in case of an emergency, it has been decided to suspend the vaccination of AstraZeneca, but hopes that once the European Medicines Agency gives the green light, France can quickly resume vaccination. On the same day, the Norwegian health authorities announced that a medical worker had died of cerebral hemorrhage after receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine. This is the second such death in Norway in a few days. An Italian teacher also died on the 14th, the day after the AstraZeneca vaccine. The Italian Medicines Agency said on the 15th that it will follow the example of some European countries in suspending the use of AstraZeneca vaccine. On the afternoon of the 15th, the Spanish Ministry of Health held an emergency meeting with regional health agencies and finally decided to suspend AstraZeneca vaccination for at least 15 days. The Portuguese Ministry of Health also announced the suspension of the above-mentioned vaccines. According to data released by the French National Agency for Drug Safety on the 14th, the discomfort rate of AstraZeneca vaccine in France is 0.66% (higher than Pfizer vaccine’s 0.19% and Modena’s 0.12%). Outside Europe, Indonesia also announced on the 15th that it would postpone the AstraZeneca vaccination. Despite the continuing problems, AstraZeneca insists that there is no evidence that the vaccine increases the risk of blood clots. Currently, only Canada still publicly supports the AstraZeneca vaccine. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on the 15th that Canadian experts are convinced that all vaccines vaccinated in the country are very safe. The health authorities of Australia, the United Kingdom and Thailand also indicated that they will continue to promote AstraZeneca’s vaccination work.

The World Health Organization said on the 15th that the organization’s advisory group is reviewing vaccine-related reports and will meet with the European Medicines Agency on the 16th to discuss related issues. However, WHO experts reiterated that there is no direct causal relationship between the AstraZeneca vaccine and the occurrence of thrombosis, and the AstraZeneca vaccine should be continued. Sumia Swaminatan, the chief scientist of the WHO, said that the probability of thrombosis in the vaccinated population is “far lower than the general population.” “We don’t want people to panic. At present, we recommend that countries continue to use Aspen Likang vaccine.” Currently, the vaccine has not yet been approved in the United States. The President of the National Institutes of Health Francis Collins said on the 15th that independent supervisors are evaluating the safety and effectiveness of the AstraZeneca vaccine, and it is expected that its emergency use authorization is expected to be approved within one month.

According to the “New York Times” report on the 16th, European political circles and medical experts worry that the suspension of one of the most commonly used new crown vaccines in Europe will cause vaccine skeptics to make a comeback. At present, several European countries are holding general elections. The current government will expand the scale of vaccination at all costs in order to contain the epidemic and allow the ruling party to take a firm position. But in the eyes of many Europeans, AstraZeneca vaccines are not trustworthy. According to a survey conducted by the British polling agency Yugf last week, less than half of the respondents are willing to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine, and less than 40% of the respondents in Austria are willing to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine. If this continues, the people’s trust in vaccines will decline, other vaccines will suffer, and the pressure on the government will be even greater.

French Prime Minister Castel recently announced that “the goal of vaccinating 10 million French people will be achieved by mid-April,” and the suspension of the AstraZeneca vaccine will inevitably hurt this effort. According to the French newspaper Le Figaro, the AstraZeneca vaccine is the third most ordered new crown vaccine in France. In theory, the vaccine is enough to vaccinate one-third of the country’s population. From a logistics point of view, France cannot provide alternative vaccines. Therefore, stopping AstraZeneca vaccine will undoubtedly threaten Macron’s promise that “As long as there is vaccine in the refrigerator, the city will not be closed.”

AstraZeneca, which has not done enough to supply more vaccines to Europe, has now become a target of criticism from European politicians. The Wall Street Journal quoted health policy experts as saying that for AstraZeneca, headquartered in the United Kingdom, whether or not the results indicate a link between blood clots and vaccination, the richest and most populous countries in Europe have suspended vaccination against the vaccine. The credibility of posed a new threat. The German Ministry of Health said on the 15th that after the news that the AstraZeneca vaccine was related to blood clots, the Paul Ehrlich Institute, the organization in charge of the vaccine, deemed it necessary to conduct further investigations. In this regard, Lauterbach, a member of the German Federal Parliament and professor of epidemiology, questioned the decision of the German government, believing that Germany is facing a third wave of epidemics, and it is a more sensible choice not to suspend the vaccination of AstraZeneca.

Agence France-Presse said that after vaccination problems, 65% of Italians hope to choose their own vaccine brand. Among them, most people want to get the Pfizer vaccine (46%), followed by Modena (22%) and the Russian vaccine “Satellite-V” (10%). Only 9% are willing to get the AstraZeneca vaccine. The chairman of the “Unyielding France” Movement Party, Melanchon, suggested on the 15th that the Chinese and Russian vaccines should be adopted decisively. He said: “If I were the president, I would definitely adopt the Chinese and Russian vaccines. Don’t engage in ideological practices in public health. Instead, we should choose those vaccines that have been proven to be effective.” When asked about the fact that China and Russia’s vaccines have not yet been approved by the European Union, Melanchon believes that “obeying the regulations will only lead us to a tragic death in compliance with the rules.”