Norway pauses use of AstraZeneca vaccine

Erna SolbergPhoto: Jil Yngland / NTB

Norway is putting vaccinations with AstraZeneca’s corona vaccine on hold.

The decision was made after Denmark and five other countries decided to put vaccinations with AstraZeneca vaccines on hold due to several vaccinated people reporting blood clots.

“We are waiting to see if there is any connection between the vaccination and these cases of blood clots,” infection control director Geir Bukholm at the National Institute of Public Health (FHI) noted.

He added that the Norwegian Medicines Agency has initiated investigations of the vaccine.

“We are collaborating with the European Medicines Agency to see what kind of data they have, and we will also consult with other European countries that use the vaccine,” he told NTB.

“Advantages of good European cooperation”

In Denmark, they have put the vaccination on pause for 14 days, and Bukholm says the FHI hopes to clarify the situation by then.

Bukholm says that no specific studies have been done in Norway related to the vaccine’s side effects in the form of blood clots.

“But there has been a careful review of all reported side effects before the vaccine was approved in Europe. This is one of the advantages of having good European cooperation in the pharmaceutical field, that we get reports of side effects from other countries,” he noted.

Doses that have been distributed throughout Norway to be stored locally

The FHI decided to stop the distribution of the AstraZeneca vaccine to Norwegian municipalities. Those that have already received the vaccines must store them locally.

Norwegian health authorities decided to suspend the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine until the European Medicines Agency has investigated the suspicion that it may lead to blood clots.

“In Norway, there are so far 121,820 people vaccinated with AstraZeneca. This pause means that we will stop the distribution of AstraZeneca vaccines until further notice. The doses that have been sent out will be stored in accordance with regulations on site,” Bukholm said.

Delays to the vaccination program

He pointed out that AstraZeneca had already announced delays in deliveries in the coming weeks. 

Bukholm also noted that this pause could lead to the vaccination program being somewhat delayed.

Denmark and several European countries have stopped using the vaccine due to suspicion that it can lead to severe blood clots. There is one death in Denmark allegedly related to the case.

No connection has been established between the cases and the vaccine.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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2 Comments on "Norway pauses use of AstraZeneca vaccine"

  1. I did not think that Erna Solberg will join “Ban ban” politics. But it seems that banning things is the most liked activity of politicians today. Again, ban first, and offer no alternative until miracle happens. It seems Høyre is losing its edge. 😏

  2. The EU vaccination policy still seems like watching a train crash.
    The EU and ‘ dependent countries put in vaccine orders 3 months after the Uk did.
    The EU joint purchase policy has been much slower than that of single nations, and the EU is paying millions
    more than they need to by opting to prioritise the Pfizer rather than the equally good AstraZeneca vaccine, which is also easier, cheaper to transport and store safely.
    They were much slower to approve the Pfizer and Oxford AstraZeneca vaccines after the Uk had already
    publicised the vaccines’ efficacy. Eu leaders caused confusion and increased delay of rollout by spreading
    misinformation and giving unscientific opinion on non-related health problems like the occasional blood clot.
    Metaphorically Norway has shot itself in the foot by linking vaccine purchase to the failing EU policies.
    Norway could have acted independently. Kast ikke vekk din selstendighet, Norge !

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