India will review AstraZeneca vaccine after blood clot concerns
India will carry out a deeper review of post-vaccination side effects from the AstraZeneca covid vaccine shot.
India will conduct a deeper analysis of post-vaccination side effects from the AstraZeneca covid vaccine shot, reported news agency AFP, even as World Health Organisation (WHO) has said there was no reason to stop the usage of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 jab.
This development comes after several countries including Denmark, Norway, Iceland, and Thailand temporarily suspended the vaccination with the drug after isolated reports of recipients developing blood clots.
Covishield has been developed by the Pune-based Serum Institute of India, the world's largest vaccine maker, in partnership with the Oxford University and Swedish-British firm AstraZeneca.
"We are looking at all the adverse events, particularly serious adverse events like deaths and hospitalization. We will come back if we find anything of concern," N.K. Arora, a member of the National Task Force on Covid-19, told news agency AFP.
India has already administered 2.8 crore shots in its vaccination drive so far, out of which most of them are of Covisheld developed by Serum Institute of India in partnership with AstraZeneca. A record 20.53 lakh doses were administered just on Friday.
Arora said there was "no immediate issue of concern as the number of adverse events (in India) is very, very low. We are relooking at these to see if there was an issue of blood clotting."
“There is a real effort from our side that once the complete investigation is done, to put its results in the public domain, on the ministry of health website,” Arora added.
Earlier, AstraZeneca defended its vaccine on Friday saying that there was "no evidence of an increased risk" of blood clots, and European and UK medicines regulators have each said the link between the vaccine and blood clots has not been confirmed and that rollouts should continue.
Apart from using AstraZenca’s Covisheld, India has been using indigenous vaccine giant Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin in its rapidly expanding vaccination drive.
India’s total active caseload stands at 2.02 lakh. India on Saturday recorded 24,882 fresh Covid-19 infections which took the caseload to 1,13,33,728.
(With inputs from AFP)