The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has identified 30 cases of blood clot events after 18.1 million doses of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine were administered.
The regulator has been examining potential links between the vaccine and rare blood clots after reports in Europe led to its roll-out being paused.
It identified 30 cases out of 18.1 million doses of the jab administered up to and including March 24, with seven deaths among them.
But it is not known whether these cases have occurred as a result of the jab, or whether they would have happened naturally in the population anyway, and people are being urged to continue coming forward for the jab as the benefits far outweigh the risks.
🚨 Important reminder – The UK has found 30 cases of blood clots after 18 million doses of the AZ vaccine.— Politics For All (@PoliticsForAlI) April 6, 2021
So a 0.00006% chance – and lots of those may be unrelated
Continue to follow what the scientists tell us
Nadhim Zahawi told BBC Breakfast: “To put it in perspective, we have done almost 20 million vaccinations using the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine.
“Both vaccines have saved something like 6,300 lives between December and the end of February, so it’s important to continue to follow what the clinicians, the scientists, the regulators tell us. And we will absolutely do exactly as they say.”
Channel 4 News reported that the MHRA was considering proposals to restrict the use of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine in younger people and a decision could be made imminently.
MHRA chief executive Dr June Raine said: “People should continue to get their vaccine when invited to do so.
“Our thorough and detailed review is ongoing into reports of very rare and specific types of blood clots with low platelets following the Covid-19 vaccine AstraZeneca.
“No decision has yet been made on any regulatory action.”
The 30 cases in the UK include 22 reports of cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) and eight of other thrombosis events with low platelets.
CVST clots stop blood draining from the brain properly.
A number of countries have imposed restrictions on the use of the jab in younger adults.
But the head of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) has said there is “no evidence” to support restricting the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine in any population.
The view is echoed by the World Health Organisation (WHO), which has urged countries to continue using the jab.