Health officials say ‘no evidence’ of blood clot risk from AstraZeneca vaccine

Dr. Irvin McIntyre, Dr. Shallaudin Ahmed, DR. Laura Esprit

The global roll out of the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine encountered another hurdle when a handful of countries paused their use of the shot following reports it could be connected to blood clots.

But while many countries are pulling away, health officials in Dominica are defending the vaccine, stressing that  there is “no evidence of an increased risk” of blood clots, and that the ministry of health’s vaccination programme should continue.

First to address the topic this week, was Health and Wellness Minister Hon. Dr Irvin McIntyre who stated at a cabinet press conference that the available data suggests that numbers of adverse events related to blood clots are the same (and possibly, in fact, lower) in vaccinated groups compared to unvaccinated populations.

“We are still safe with our AstraZeneca vaccine. We must also look at the majority of cases who’ve continued with the AstraZeneca. It’s a minority that has stopped the vaccine. Over fifty countries are using the vaccine and maybe just a few of them that have held back their vaccination from  AstraZeneca,” he noted.

The health minister noted that halting a vaccine roll out during a pandemic has consequences as it could result in delays in protecting people and the potential for increased vaccine hesitancy as a result of people who have seen the headlines and understandably, become concerned.

“So if you ask me, I don’t believe it helped the situation at all. So we, here in Dominica, have nothing to worry about as it pertains to our vaccine,” Dr. McIntyre insisted. “As we saw with the safety of vaccines, after the Chinese Vaccine, AstraZeneca was second on the list so I don’t think we should worry about that. There is no significant scientific evidence to say that it was related to the blood clots which was mentioned.”

Adding her voice to the discussion, Director of Primary Health Care, Dr. Laura Esprit pointed out that getting vaccinated against COVID-19 will not reduce illness or deaths from other non-COVID related conditions such as blood clot which are known to occur frequently in the population, whether vaccinated or not.

“Venous thromboembolism is the third most common cardiovascular disease globally so that’s irrespective of taking the vaccine,” Dr. Esprit explained.

She further stated that in extensive vaccination campaigns, it is routine for countries to signal potential adverse events following immunization, however, this does not necessarily mean that the events are linked to the vaccination itself but it’s a good practice to investigate all of them.

“It also shows that the vaccination surveillance system is working and that effective controls are in place,”  the health official stated.

Dr. Esprit further pointed out that the World Health Organization (WHO) has said that the benefits of the AstraZeneca Vaccine outweigh its risk and recommends that vaccinations continue.

In an effort to strengthen the message from his colleagues, National Epidemiologist, Dr. Shalauddin Ahmed referenced information released by the company which produces the vaccine that more than 17 million people have been vaccinated in the European Union and the United Kingdom and have shown no evidence of an increased risk of pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis or thrombocytopenia in any defined age group or gender batch for any particular country.

He further emphasized that the batch of AstraZeneca vaccine that we are using in Dominica is a different from the one used by the Europeans.

“In conclusion, the shelf life for this AstraZeneca batch of vaccines is limited with an expiry date of May end, however, to give an eight-week interval between the doses, the deadline for the first dose of this vaccine is March 29 so let us hurry up and let’s get vaccinated,” Dr. Ahmed advised.

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  1. Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
    March 23, 2021

    You sound so unintelligent; perhaps even to yourself!

    In the first place because one is vaccinated is not an assurance they cannot be infected by the virus!

    None of the vaccines gives anybody total protection; and since England has one of the highest cases of coronavirus infections, inviting people from England to visit Dominica; might be a death sentence for the population of Dominica.

    And this nonsense about angry about Britain exiting the EU, is hogwash; before the EU Britain existed: ” The Sun Never Set On The British Empire:” and that was a time when the World was colonized by the British; even America was once a colony of Britain.

    In case you do not know the EU is destine to collapse in the near feature, and that is written in biblical prophecy; if you don’t believe me take a look at the EU currency, you will see a woman sitting on a horse side ways, that was long documented in biblical prophecy.

  2. Ostriches
    March 22, 2021

    We had our beautiful parrots in Dominica, now we have Ostriches with their deep down in the sand seeing nothing! But saying to the people of Dominica “all is fine.” I believe the parrots more than the ostriches.

    • Toto
      March 23, 2021

      You are so right brother, ostriches have their head in the sand but their bodo expose so, stuck up in the air, tuti ni. And they think nobody is going to jump them? They cannot fly anyway and with their head bury in the sand they can not run either. What to do but take it. Them parrots smaller but much smarter any time

  3. Erickson
    March 22, 2021

    Dear, Oh dear! I wish we all knew how to disagree without being disagreeable! Hmmm!

  4. LifeandDeath
    March 21, 2021

    Funny how everyone who has had the virus and dies (of anything) is said to have died of the Virus, yet when the vaccine is suspected of causing any negative side effects, they say, No Evidence!!
    Where is the evidence that warrants a vaccine, let alone compulsory world wide vaccinations for a Disease that is naturally survived by 99% of those infected? Till now many of us can’t see that evidence. But #carryon.

  5. Bring back the kidnapped parrots
    March 21, 2021

    This may have been all about money and profits for the manufacture of vaccines, the other companies are trying to knock them out so that they get all the profits they are putting money over the health and safety of people. Does not matter who makes the vaccine the more the better and the sooner the better. At this point it really does not matter what vaccine someone gets as long as they get vaccinated. Some people are waiting for their second shot but at least they already got one shot. A study was done in Israel that said that just getting one Pfizer shot gives 85% protection while waiting for the second.

    • Annon
      March 22, 2021

      There is no proof that any vaccine is safe or effective. Vaccines makers are exempt from doing meaningful studies prior to the release of vaccines. Vaccine makers have immunity from prosecution and lawsuits regarding causing any illness or death to people that have taken their shots. The covid jab is not a vaccine. Read about the contents and look at the online videos by doctors.

  6. Mac
    March 21, 2021

    If Dominica can vaccinate the adult population, then Dominica could try and attract UK. citizens for holidays this year.

    Politics is just as dirty in the EU, as any where else. Germany and France are just upset the UK. has left and is doing better with it’s vaccinaction programme.

    • Nargold
      March 22, 2021

      Germany’s economy and GDP is close to twice the size of that of the UK and the powerhouse of Europe. Germany could not care less about the UK leaving the EU. They will still sell their cars, industrial robots and machinery, etc. to the UK. What is the UK going to sell to Germany. The British PM is a clown and is as such regarded in Germany and France…

    • From me
      March 22, 2021

      absolutely true.. not sure which bad attitude people have clicked the downward thumb but what you’re saying makes complete sense to me.

  7. hmm
    March 21, 2021

    This is coming from the same people who said that there was no evidence of human to human transmission of the coronavirus back when we had the best chance to stem the flow of the disease. When you put out misinformation that affects people and never account for your mistakes you get a reputation for being dishonest. It’s nobody’s fault but their own that people no longer trust these institutions

  8. Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
    March 21, 2021

    You all need to shut up; talking as if you three conducted some research in Dominica to see if it causes blood clot; and came to a conclusion it did not!

    Fact is its like any other medication; some people react to some medication differently; the side effect varies. There are few people who suffered blood clotting in their brain and died as a result.

    Haven’t you heard; it’s said the benefits out weigh the danger?

    I took the Madonna COVID-19 vaccine, I suffered no symptoms of anything that remotely resembled a reaction, or side effect; except for minor discomfort (pain) at the injection site.

    Nevertheless; I have friends who took it they experience fever; whereas others suffered headaches; the type classified as migraine headaches.

    You all don’t have a dime to buy COVID-19 vaccine; as usual you had to beg for a handout which you got; now you all running off your mouths about what you don’t know: it has caused blood clots!

    • Man bites dogs
      March 22, 2021

      @Francisco, Relax and stop being nasty to your fellow black man and women for some reason you are a very angry man attacking every single person people talking about you laughing off you saying you have a mental issue with yourself cool it guy and read your bible Amen.

      • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
        March 23, 2021

        Man Dog, I doh attacking anybody eh!
        However; the truth is these so called doctors piping crap; they repeat everything and all garbage they hear. For the three talking fart about the vaccine does not cause blood clot when we know it has is total nonsense!
        I am not suggesting people should not take the vaccine because of the three or four unfortunate cases; which might be a coincident; the people who died may have had some underling medical issue which aided the vaccine in causing the blood to clot.
        The rubbish they are talking is based on “they say; and not medical research they did.
        Until they can produce something as in the following:
        The scientific method which they used to explain the natural occurrences ( phenomena ) of the vaccine by using a logical, consistent, systematic method of investigation, information data  collection, data analysis hypothesis, testing by experimenting, and refinement to arrive at a well-tested, well-documented, explanation that is well-supported…

        • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
          March 23, 2021

          well-documented, explanation that is well-supported by evidence they do not have; should not stay in Dominica and talk rubbish which is simply based on “they say;” because in their case that is what they have done!

          Now; what I explained in therms of the scientific method; you may not understand what I am talking about, unless you majored in Health Science; or some other high level of science.

          I’ve been there done that; and if the clowns who are simple repeaters of what they hear and read, are reading me; they can’t argue with me about what I wrote because  they are not in any position to refute what I stated!

    • Annon
      March 22, 2021

      I guess that you haven’t heard that there is no guarantee that you won’t get covid after you get the jab. In other words, it doesn’t protect you from covid. This whole thing is about money and genocide. Time to do your homework.

      • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
        March 23, 2021

        ” it doesn’t protect you from covid. This whole thing is about money and genocide. Time to do your homework.” (Annon).

        Anon all of that in the quote is total nonsensical hogwash: I cannot say you are totally illiterate, but most illiterates might have a different point of view.

        It is stupid for you to talk about genocide; because the word means ” the deliberate killing of a large group of people, especially those of a particular ethnic group or nation.”

        Millions of people all over the world of all ethnicity have died from COVID-19, in America more than a million people of all color and shade of skin has died; so how can you make such a stupid comment?

        Did you do any homework before you talk such rubbish?

        If you have COVID-19 they would not even give you the vaccine, because it is not a cure; nevertheless; if you become infected by the virus after you are vaccinated, your immune system will better fight the virus.

        And you might live!

        • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
          March 23, 2021

          So, let me correct this please:

          “America more than a million people of all color and shade of skin has died; so how can you make such a stupid comment?”

          That should read: ‘ in America more than half of a million people of all color and shade of skin has died.’

          There are 30,034,297 confirm case of people infected with the virus in the United States, and 546,090 confirmed dead!

          That is as of today March, 23rd 2021.

  9. Erickson
    March 20, 2021

    “Dr. Esprit further pointed out that the World Health Organization (WHO) has said that the benefits of the AstraZeneca Vaccine outweigh its risk.” While this might be good news, has the WHO been up front regarding the risks (and I don’t mean immediate side effects) associated with any of the vaccines? Or is it that there are no risks at all? How many people are clearly told, “You are about to receive a vaccine which carries the following risks: X, Y and Z”?

    • Rick
      March 22, 2021

      There are no “late side effects”. The vaccine is in the body for only a few days. Either there are unwanted (and maybe ongoing) side effects triggered in this time or never.

    • me
      March 22, 2021

      To give you an idea of how risky it is.. taking the birth control pill is more risky than this when it comes to blood clots.. hoping that helps you decide..

  10. %
    March 20, 2021

    Thats all i have to say!

    • Me
      March 23, 2021

      That is not a lot. So why bother?

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