Health authorities in several countries including Denmark, Norway, Iceland have suspended the use of AstraZeneca’s vaccine following reports of the formation of blood clots in some people who have been vaccinated.
Margaret Harris told a briefing that it was an “excellent vaccine” and that no causal relationship had been established between the shot and the health problems reported, calling the pause in use “a precautionary measure.”
“It’s very important to understand that, yes, we should continue to be using the AstraZeneca vaccine. All that we look at is what we always look at: Any safety signal must be investigated…,” she said.
Top doctor tries to reassure Albertans of AstraZeneca vaccine safety
The WHO’s global advisory committee on vaccine safety is currently reviewing the reports and will report on its findings, she added, as it does with any safety issues.
“It is very important we are hearing safety signals because if we were not hearing about safety signals that would suggest there is not enough review and vigilance,”” she said.
Health Canada said Thursday it will move forward with administering the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine despite at least nine European countries stopping its use.
Health Canada spokesperson Tammy Jarbeau told Global News the agency is aware of reports of adverse events in Europe and would “like to reassure Canadians that the benefits of the vaccine continue to outweigh its risks.”
“Health Canada authorized the vaccine based on a thorough, independent review of the evidence and determined that it meets Canada’s stringent safety, efficacy and quality requirements,” Jarbeau said.
— with files from Global News