A senior World Health Organization (WHO) official, is asking Africans to have faith in the AstraZeneca vaccine. This follows suspension of the drug by European countries.
WHO’s head of immunization in Africa – Dr Richard Mihigo- says the product has proven to be safe.
The European Medicines Agency is investigating reports of blood clots following inoculation. It however believes the benefits of the jab outweigh the risks.
To this effect, WHO also says there lacks evidence linking the blood clots to the vaccine, but is reviewing the case today.
At the same time, African countries are relying on the vaccine as it is cheaper and easier to store. In addition to this, about 23 African Nations are sharing 14.5 million doses under the global Covax initiative.
In Africa, the Democratic Republic of Congo is joining a number of European countries in postponing the start of vaccination. Oh the other hand, health authorities in Uganda and Nigeria say they believe the vaccine is safe.
Somalia has today received its first batch of the Oxford vaccine through Covax. The country’s President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo, has been seen and pictured receiving his injection, saying he has faith in the country’s vaccination efforts.
Preliminary investigations into the safety of the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine, reveal no links between the vaccine and the reported clotting.
These findings by WHO follow reports from a dozen countries in Europe claiming a number of people have blood clot-related issues after inoculation.
Countries like Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Norway, Austria and Ireland among others have put on hold its use. Sweden is the latest country to join the growing list with the country’s health ministry citing it as a precautionary measure.
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