Spain, Germany, France and Italy have become the latest European countries to temporarily halt the rollout of the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine over a small number of blood clot concerns, going against the advice of international medical agencies as a third wave of infections looms over the continent.
According to CNN, Spain will stop using the vaccine for two weeks as announced by the country’s Health Minister Carolina Darias in a nationally televised news conference on Monday.
It’s a “temporary and precautionary” suspension, she said, “until the risks can be evaluated by the European Medicines Agency.”
After initially standing by the safety of the vaccine, German health minister Jens Spahn said Monday that the country would pause inoculations as a precaution, following reports of a handful of cases of blood clots in people vaccinated with the AstraZeneca shot in Denmark and Norway.
France and Italy also halted their rollouts of the vaccine Monday, pending review by the EU’s medicines regulator, the European Medicines Agency (EMA), although the body later reiterated its advice that countries stick to the rollout.