Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation statement on use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine

On Wednesday 7 April, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) issued new advice, concluding a possible link between COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca and extremely rare, unlikely to occur blood clots. They also said that the benefits of vaccination continue to outweigh any risks but the MHRA advises careful consideration be given to people who are at higher risk of specific types of blood clots because of their medical condition.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has advised: 

  • Under-30s with no underlying health conditions should be offered an alternative to the AstraZeneca vaccine where available
  • Those who have received their first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccination should continue to be offered a second dose of the same jab 

You can read the JCVI statement here.

What does the European Medicines Agency say?
On Wednesday 7 April, European Medicines Agency’s safety committee (PRAC) concludedthat unusual blood clots with low blood platelets should be listed as very rare side effects of Vaxzevria (formerly COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca) but confirmed that the overall benefit-risk remains positive.