The benefit outweighs the risk: MOH urges calm over new AstraZeneca vaccine restriction
WINDSOR, ONT. -- The Medical Officer of Health for the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit says the new restrictions for the Astrazeneca vaccine, announced Monday by NACI, are not reason to panic.
“To date, there is no case of these rare adverse events have been reported in Canada,” says Dr. Wajid Ahmed.
The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) updated their guidelines on the AstraZeneca vaccine, recommending it not be used on adults under the age of 55, for renewed concerns over blood clots.
“The exact mechanism by which the as triggered this event is still under investigation,” says Ahmed “These case were identified primarily in women, under the age of 55 years.”
Windsor-Essex pharmacies have been administered in AstraZeneca vaccines since early March, as part of a pilot project in three hot spots.
These vaccines are only available by appointment, and for people between 60 and 65 years of age.
Ahmed says no one, under the age of 60 has received an AstraZeneca vaccine in the community.
“NACI concluded that benefits of getting a vaccine outweighs the risk for these adverse events in individuals 55 years and older,” he says.
He is hoping for some clarity, soon, from NACI, about what might cause these rare, adverse effects, so they can continue to use AstraZeneca vaccines.
“It will have an impact, definitely, because when we are counting on these vaccines that we’re hoping that it will be available for everyone,”says Ahmed.
If not that, Ahmed is hoping for some good news from other vaccine manufacturers.
“Such as Jansen or Nova vax or other vaccines that are currently being under reviewed, will be available to us.”