Vaccine related issues.
As of March 17, 2021, more than 120 million cases of COVID-19 infection, with more than 2 million deaths, have been reported globally.
Vaccination remains an important tool to help prevent further illness and death and to control pandemics.
So far, more than 20 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine have been administered in Europe and more than 27 million doses of Covishield vaccine (AstraZeneca vaccine by the Serum Institute of India) have been administered in India.
The GACVS COVID-19 subcommittee met virtually on 16 and 19 March 2021 to review available information and data on the incidence of thromboembolism (blood clots) and thrombocytopenia (low platelets) following vaccination with AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine.
The sub-committee reviewed clinical trial data and reports based on safety data from Europe, UK, India, and Vigibase, the WHO global database for individual case safety reports.
Based on a careful scientific review of the information already available, the sub-committee came to conclusions and recommendations, namely:
AstraZeneca's (including Covishield) COVID-19 vaccine continues to have a positive-benefit profile, with tremendous potential to prevent infection and reduce mortality worldwide.
Available data do not show an overall improvement in blood clotting conditions such as deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism following the administration of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Both conditions occur naturally and are not uncommon. They also occur due to COVID-19.
The observed rate was less than would be expected for such an event.
Although very rare and unique thromboembolic events combined with thrombocytopenia, such as cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST), have also been reported following vaccination with the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in Europe, it is not certain that they are due to vaccination.
Pharmacovigilance and the European Drug Agency's Risk Assessment Committee reviewed 18 cases of CVST out of a total of more than 20 million vaccinations with AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine in Europe.
A causal relationship between these rare events has not been established to date.
Adequate health education should be provided to health care professionals and vaccinated people to recognize the signs and symptoms of all serious adverse events following vaccination with all COVID-19 vaccines, so that people can seek and receive appropriate medical care and care. and relevant.
The GACVS subcommittee recommends that countries continue to monitor the safety of all COVID-19 vaccines and promote reporting of suspected adverse events.
The GACVS subcommittee also agreed with the European Medicines Agency's plans to further investigate and monitor these events.
The GACVS COVID-19 subcommittee will continue to review the safety data of all COVID-19 vaccines and update advice as necessary.
The WHO COVID-19 vaccine safety surveillance guide provides guidance to countries on monitoring safety and sharing adverse event data for the new COVID-19 vaccine.
The following is DG's statement at the conference:
After six weeks of declining cases in January and February, we are now on track for a fourth consecutive week of case increases.
This is a worrying trend as we continue to see the impact of variants, societal openness and unfair vaccine delivery.
The WHO Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety met this week to review data on blood clots and low platelets among some people receiving the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.
The committee has recommended that the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine outweigh the risks, with the tremendous potential to prevent infection and death from COVID-19.
Although I am pleased that nearly 150 countries have now started vaccinating, we still face serious obstacles to increasing production and distribution.
Vaccine equity is very important in large cities, especially where people live in crowded conditions and the risk of transmission is high.
This week marks the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. Like vaccine equity, racial equality must be an important part of our joint recovery from COVID-19.