The European Medicines Agency said Thursday in a much anticipated report that the benefits of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine “continue to outweigh the risk of side effects” and that the injection “is not associated with an increased overall risk of blood clots”.
But Finland has suspended use of the vaccine until the end of a week-long investigation by the National Institute of Health and Welfare into two possible cases of blood clots.
The deployment of the vaccine will be now resume in Germany, France, Italy, Spain and most of the other countries of the European Union which had suspended the use of the projectile pending the EMA review. But Sweden and Denmark, as well as Norway (outside the EU) said they would need more time to consider the report.
The EMA added that “the vaccine may be associated with very rare cases of blood clots associated with thrombocytopenia”, but noted that “a causal link with the vaccine is not proven, but is possible and deserves. further analysis. ”
The French government announced Thursday that the entire Paris region would be placed under lockdown, forcing President Emmanuel Macron to go back on his insistence that these strict measures can be avoided.
The pandemic continues to spread in France, and the Paris region is the third large French region to be reincarcerated after the Pas de Calais in the north and the entire Côte d’Azur region in the south.
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The vaccines have caused more delays in Europe’s struggling vaccination campaigns, which can now resume. While the UK has successfully vaccinated 40% of its population, this proportion is only 12% in the EU.
Meanwhile, Macron may have to pay a heavy political price for reversing his insistence that France could avoid the strict lockdowns it went through last year. With around a third of French territory – and its most populous areas – now under the strictest regime, it will disappoint both the impatient who denounce the restrictions and the cautious who warn that its policy is dangerous.
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