The European Medicines Agency’s safety committee (called PRAC) ruled Wednesday that the novel coronavirus vaccine from AstraZeneca has more benefits than risks.
- Per CNN, EMA Executive Director Emer Cooke said the group “has confirmed that the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine in preventing COVID-19 overall outweigh the risk of side effects.”
The European Medicines Agency said Wednesday there is a “possible link” between the AstraZeneca vaccine and “very rare cases of blood clots.”
Still, the agency said the benefits of a COVID-19 vaccine outweigh the risk of blood clots, CNN reports.
- “EMA’s safety committee (PRAC) has concluded today that unusual blood clots with low blood platelets should be listed as very rare side effects of Vaxzevria (formerly COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca),” the statement said, according to CNN.
- “In reaching its conclusion, the committee took into consideration all currently available evidence, including the advice from an ad hoc expert group,” the statement read, according to CNN.
Why the blood clots?
Cooke said “a plausible explanation for these rare side events is an immune response to the vaccine similar to one seen in patients treated with heparin,” according to CNBC.
- The blood clots are technically called heparin-induced thrombocytopenia, according to Cooke, CNBC reported.
Concerns over AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine
Reuters reports that there were at least 30 cases of blood clots following the use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. However, there were more than 18.1 million doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine given out by that time.
That suggests the blood clots happened in 0.000001% of the total number of people who received at least one dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in the United Kingdom, as I wrote for the Deseret News.