The alarmism generated last Monday regarding the AstraZeneca vaccine, whose the vaccination program was stopped by the Government due to isolated events of thrombosis among the population, has paralyzed the first mass vaccination trial to be held in Valencia, with teachers and educational staff as the victims.
However, many experts who work in the health area say that, based on the data offered by the Ministry of Health, the decision is completely wrong.
José Antonio Forcada, president of the National Association of Nursing and Vaccines (Anenvac), says that the decision has assumed an “excess of precaution” since there is no evidence to show that the introduction of the vaccine has increased the incidence of thrombosis amongst its recipients.
Public Health Nurse and Nursing Council of the Valencian Community (CECOVA), as well as secretary of the Spanish Vaccination Association (AEV), Forcada hopes that the European Medicines Agency (EMA) will maintain its support for the vaccine of AstraZeneca and Oxford in a process that saves an “infinitely higher” number of lives to the possible adverse reactions that are currently receiving a disproportionate amount of publicity.
Both the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) have said on many occasions that all cases are being investigated for a possible post-vaccination adverse reaction and that they did not advise stopping vaccinations, since the incidence rate of cases was not higher among the group of vaccinated people than among a similar group of those unvaccinated.
But instead, some European countries stopped vaccinations and others then followed in a cascade. In Spain, two autonomous communities immediately suspended vaccinations and were followed by the Ministry of Health which opted to suspend it for 15 days.
“We think that there has been a lot of haste when it comes to stopping vaccination and a great lack of coordination at the European level,” Forcada said.
Many other European countries have continued with their vaccination programs. The United Kingdom, Canada and Australia have been more sensible and have continued with the vaccinations.
Here in Spain, due to a slightly exaggerated influence, instead of providing a sense of security and continuing with the procedures, there was a ‘knee jerk reaction’ from politicians without proper reference to the science. The stoppage was made out of fear because the decisions are made by politicians and not by science.
In the case of covid and AstraZeneca, the incidence is less than one case per million doses administered, while there are five times more cases among the population without a vaccine than with it. The fear that has been generated by the politicians is completely unjustified and their decisions will harm the vaccine.
Amós García, the president of the Spanish Association of Vaccinology said, “The decision to suspend the vaccination with AstraZeneca comes in a context of a lack of vaccines, and what’s more, this move will create a sensation of alarm, fear and panic in the population. We will have to move heaven and earth to recover the credibility of this vaccine.”
AstraZeneca itself said that a careful review of the 17 million people inoculated with it in the EU and Britain found again that there was “no evidence” of a link with clots.
It found that of those millions of people, there have been 15 cases of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and 22 of pulmonary embolism reported after vaccination; lower than the number that would be expected to occur naturally within that number of people.