On Wednesday, Denmark became the first European country to announce that it is banning the use of the coronavirus vaccine AstraZeneca for good.
Despite recommendations from the World Health Organization and the European Medicines Agency to continue using the vaccine, “Denmark’s vaccination campaign will continue without the AstraZeneca vaccine,” the health authority’s director Soren Brostrom told a news conference.
Denmark was the first country in Europe to suspend the use of AstraZeneca jab in its vaccination rollout following reports of rare but severe cases of blood clots among those who had received the vaccine.
More than a dozen countries followed suit, but all but a few have since resumed use after the European Medicines Agency (EMA) stressed the benefits of the vaccine and considered it “safe and effective”.
However, Denmark continued to endure using the vaccine as it conducted its own studies.
In Denmark, two cases of thrombosis, one of which was fatal, were associated with vaccinations after more than 140,000 people received jabs from the Anglo-Swedish drug manufacturer.
In the country of 5.8 million inhabitants, 8% are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 and 17% have received the first dose.
Since the suspension of the use of AstraZeneca jab in March, Denmark has continued with Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna jabs.
The AstraZeneca suspension is delaying the country’s ambitious plans to roll out vaccines, but the health authority said in a statement that the availability of other vaccines combined with the pandemic under control currently meant the inoculation campaign could continue without it.