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AstraZeneca vaccine is safe: Dr Fong

March 18, 2021 12:35 pm
[File Photo]

The Ministry of health is maintaining that the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is safe and Fiji will continue with the vaccination programme.

Permanent Secretary for Health, Dr James Fong, says all the experts Fiji is liaising with, have disputed the decision of some European countries to halt the use of AstraZeneca for several reasons.

Dr Fong says Austria is the only country that has reported incidents of blood clots among recipients of the drug and other nations have stopped using AstraZeneca as a precaution.

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“Clotting problems were never found in any of our initial studies when they were field-testing the vaccines. The second point is that the clotting problem occurs one in a million.”

Dr Fong says there is no biological reason why any of the particles of the vaccine will interfere with Fijians’ blood clotting system.

He adds the European Medicine Agency has also disagreed with the decision by European countries to suspend the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine.

As Fiji continues to use the drug, Fijians are being urged to register online in order to be eligible for vaccination.

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