AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine: WHO reacts, says benefits outweigh the risks

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The World Health Organization (WHO) has said that the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine was temporarily suspended by some countries in the European Union (EU) as a precautionary measure.

According to the WHO, the countries suspended the vaccines due to reports of rare blood coagulation disorders in persons who had received the vaccine.

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It stated: “Vaccination against COVID-19 will not reduce illness or deaths from other causes. Thromboembolic events are known to occur frequently. Venous thromboembolism is the third most common cardiovascular disease globally.

“In extensive vaccination campaigns, it is routine for countries to signal potential adverse events following immunization. This does not necessarily mean that the events are linked to the vaccination itself, but it is a good practice to investigate them. It also shows that the surveillance system works and that effective controls are in place, the statement said.”

The WHO explained that it has considered the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine and it outweighed its risks, adding that it was carefully assessing the latest available safety data, and will immediately communicate the findings to the public.

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