Colin Cox, Cumbria’s Director of Public Health, has reacted to news that some countries have paused use of the Oxford/Astra Zeneca COVID-19 vaccine in response to concerns about blood clotting. He said:
“The decision of a number of countries to suspend use of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is baffling. There have been 37 reports of blood clots following over 17 million doses of the vaccine being given – that’s actually a lower incidence of blood clotting than you’d expect to see just by chance, so there’s absolutely no evidence that the vaccine can cause blood clots.
“The fact that these figures are available at all shows just how carefully the safety of the vaccine is monitored, and far from being concerned about it I think people should be significantly reassured that the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is both very safe and highly effective. A failure of vaccine roll-out is one of the reasons that many parts of Europe are now entering a third wave and further lockdowns. So if you are offered vaccination in the coming days I’d strongly urge you to take it – it is safe and effective.”