People under the age of 40 in Britain will be offered a different vaccine against Covid-19 instead of Oxford / AstraZeneca, following concerns about rare cases of thromboembolism, the Daily Telegraph and Independent reported.
The Joint Vaccination and Immunization Committee (JCVI) has recommended that a Pfizer or Moderna vaccine should be offered at these ages as a “maximum precautionary measure,” the Telegraph said. A spokeswoman for the British Ministry of Health said yesterday that the position of JCVI and the British Drug Regulatory Authority (MHRA) “continues to be that the benefits of the Oxford / AstraZeneca vaccine outweigh the risks to the vast majority of adults”.
“JCVI is reviewing its recommendations based on the latest scientific advice,” the spokeswoman said in a statement, adding that Britain was planning to offer a vaccine to all adults by the end of July. In April, JCVI recommended that an alternative vaccine to AstraZeneca be offered to people under 30 years of age. Pregnant women in the United Kingdom have been told to take the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.
In recent weekly data, the UK Drug Regulatory Authority said the incidence of rare thromboembolism in combination with low platelet counts was 10.5 per 1 million doses, compared with 9.3 per 1 million last week. JCVI drafted its recommendations earlier this week and a government announcement is expected later today, the Independent reported. The regulator said on Thursday that there was some evidence that the rare thromboembolisms associated with the AstraZeneca vaccine were more common in women than in men, noting that the difference in incidence was small.