AstraZeneca delivery issues slowing down Dutch vaccination: Health Min.
The pace of coronavirus vaccination in the Netherlands will have to be lowered because of delivery problems at pharmaceutical AtraZeneca, Minister Hugo de Jonge of Public Health said on Monday. He called the pharmaceutical's announcement a "downer" and a real shock, because the Netherlands was counting on "substantial deliveries" in the first quarter, NU.nl reports.
The European Union ordered over 400 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, of which the Netherlands was set to get 11.7 million spread through this year - 4.5 million in the first quarter, 5,2 million in the second quarter, and 2 million in the third quarter. But on Friday the company announced that it will deliver fewer vaccines than expected in the first quarter.
How much fewer exactly, AstraZeneca did not say. But a senior official within the European Union told Reuters that the company will deliver 60 percent fewer doses to the EU than expected in the first quarter.
Despite this setback, De Jonge believes it is still possible to vaccinate all Netherlands residents before the autumn.