COVID-19: AstraZeneca vaccine benefits still ‘largely positive’

Dr Rogério  Pinto de Sá Gaspar, Director for Regulation and Prequalification, was responding to a journalist’s query relating to hyperlinks between the vaccine and cerebral venous sinus thrombosis, a uncommon blood clotting syndrome. 

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) on Tuesday denied that it had established any hyperlink, following stories that one among its specialists acknowledged there was a connection.  

Expert conferences underway 

Meanwhile, an EMA committee that screens the security of medicines has been assembly to evaluate the information, which can be being reviewed by a regulatory physique within the United Kingdom.  WHO is following each proceedings. 

“What we can say is that the appraisal that we have for the moment, and this is under consideration by the experts, is that the benefit risk assessment for the vaccine is still largely positive”, stated Dr Pinto de Sá Gaspar. 

He reported that “thrombolytic events” are uncommon, and are actually being categorized by way of their distribution inside the inhabitants. 

“For the time being, there is no evidence that the benefit risk assessment for the vaccine needs to be changed”, he added. “And we know from the  data coming from countries like the UK and others, that the benefits are really important in terms of reduction of the mortality of populations that are being vaccinated.” 

WHO’s Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety is because of meet on Wednesday, which additionally will take a look at the information, with a conclusion anticipated later within the week. 

Stigma and virus variants 

WHO continues to work with a gaggle of scientists worldwide to develop nomenclature for variants of the brand new coronavirus that causes COVID-19

Many individuals, together with well being specialists, have been referring to the variants by the nations during which they have been first detected, one thing the UN company desires to alter. 

“We need to make sure that any of the names that are used do not further stigmatize a person, or a last name, or a location, inadvertently”, stated Dr Maria Van Kerhove, WHO technical lead on COVID-19, responding to a query from a South African journalist. 

“There should be no stigma associated with these viruses being detected, and unfortunately we still see that happening.”  

Currently there are three variants: B117, first recognized within the UK; B 1.351, which was first recognized in South Africa, and P1, a variant first detected in Japan however circulating in Brazil.

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