Broad support for AstraZeneca vaccine pause
The national GP’s union LHV stated that they are in favor of a temporary halt in administering the AstraZeneca-vaccine. “A two-week pause is good. GPs want to be able to give their patients a clear answer to their questions”, a spokesperson of the LHV said to the ANP.
Since Thursday, there have been ten incidents where a patient had thrombosis or embolism after receiving the AstraZeneca-vaccine. The side-effect research center Lareb is currently investigating if the side-effects were caused by the coronavirus vaccine. In Denmark and Norway, there have also been multiple reports of serious blood clot formation and a reduced number of blood platelets after vaccination.
The elderly union ANBO agrees it was a good decision to temporarily halt the administration of the AstraZeneca vaccine. “First everything needs to be brought in order and all reports investigated thoroughly. We need to avoid unrest at all costs, and if there is a suspicion that something is wrong, then you need to stop for the time being”, a spokesperson for the union says.
In Gelderland, vaccinations with the AstraZeneca-vaccine were meant to commence on Monday for residents aged between 60 and 64, as well as people with Down Syndrome and obesity. Doctors now have to cancel all vaccination appointments. After Gelderland, Utrecht and Flevoland would have been next for vaccinations with the AstraZeneca vaccine.
The LHV stated they do not want to speculate over the safety of the vaccine. “That is not the task of GPs but they do play role in providing information.” According to the LNV, GPs have been receiving an increasing number of questions surrounding the AstraZeneca-vaccine in the past weeks.
Health minister, Hugo de Jonge, stated the vaccine is safe. Nonetheless, he said it was wise that precautions are being taken. “It is always good to be on the cautious side and therefore, it is smart to press the pause button for now”, de Jonge said in a press statement on Sunday. The minister emphasized that no connection had yet been made between blood clot formation and the AstraZeneca vaccine.
The Health Care Worker’s union NU’91 said the suspension of the vaccine is confusing. President of NU’91 is worried about the pressure that will be put on the health care system, should infection numbers rise and new coronavirus strains be discovered.