No evidence uptake of AstraZeneca jab in UK is slowing despite concerns across Europe

10:15am, Sat 03 Apr 2021
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There is no evidence uptake of the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine is slowing in the UK despite some European countries pausing its rollout, a public health expert has said.

Professor Linda Bauld of Edinburgh University said all studies indicated the jab was safe and effective, while the fact different countries were reviewing their position was a sign that the system was working.

Germany has suspended use of the AstraZeneca vaccine for people aged under 60 due to fears of a link with rare blood clots.

On Friday, the Dutch government also said it would temporarily halt AstraZeneca jabs for people under 60, after it received five reports of blood clots with low blood plate counts following vaccinations.

These kinds of pauses and reviews are a sign that the system is working

Speaking to the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland radio programme, Prof Bauld said reports of blood clots were “very rare” and a direct link to the vaccine was very unlikely.

She said: “These kinds of pauses and reviews are a sign that the system is working.

“Because when you see either deaths or unlikely adverse events that you wouldn’t anticipate or you didn’t see in the trials it’s reasonable for regulators to look at this.

“The MHRA is still consistently saying there’s no cause for concern and that is absolutely the message to people.”

She added: “It doesn’t look from the behavioural response, the surveys I’ve seen, that it’s affecting uptake in the UK and that’s really important.”

Professor Bauld said she had recently received her blue letter inviting her for vaccination and she was “really looking forward” to it.

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