Philippines suspend AstraZeneca jab for persons under 60

Philippines suspend AstraZeneca jab for persons under 60

Philippines has suspended the administration of the AstraZeneca vaccine for persons under the age of 60 citing fears of deadly blood clots that had been noted in parts of Europe.

The Philippine authorities made the decision barely two weeks after Germany did the same on accounts that the Berlin government had sampled cases of blood clots-some fatal others manageable.

European Medicines Agency (EMA) had recommended that the blood clot concerns be added to the list of the AstraZeneca side effects. But Food and Drug Administration chief Rolando Enrique Domingo had objected to the suggestion arguing that there are no scientific findings linking Astra to the deadly blood clots.

“This temporary suspension does not mean that the vaccine is unsafe or ineffective – it just means that we are taking precautionary measures to ensure the safety of every Filipino,” Domingo said, as quoted by Reuters.

World Health Organization (WHO) had also rubbished the concerns stating that the benefits of the injection outweigh the risks.

Philippines started the inoculation process on March 1 after receiving 525,000 doses of Astra and the country has so far injected 923,000 people courtesy of Sinovac Biotech and AstraZeneca jabs.

The country intends to vaccinate atleast 70 million of the 108 million populations by 2021.