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15 Mar 2021 | 12:41

Ireland, Netherlands suspend AstraZeneca vaccine over blood clot risks

(Sharecast News) - The Irish and the Dutch governments were the latest to join the list of countries that have halted the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccination programme until the risk of blood clots is ruled out.

The Dutch government said Sunday that the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine would not be used until at least 29 March, while Ireland said earlier that same day that it had temporarily suspended the shot as a precautionary step.

The World Health Organization downplayed the risks last week when it said that there was no link between the shot and an increased risk of developing blood clots. The statement was backed by the European Medicines Agency.

Amsterdam and Dublin's halt came after Norway's medicines agency said it had been notified of three health workers being treated in hospital for bleeding, blood clots and a low count of blood platelets after receiving the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.

"A careful review of all available safety data of more than 17m people vaccinated in the European Union (EU) and UK with Covid-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca has shown no evidence of an increased risk of pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or thrombocytopenia, in any defined age group, gender, batch or in any particular country," AstraZeneca said in a statement on Sunday.
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