Lithuania puts vaccination with AstraZeneca’s vaccine on hold temporarily

  • 2021-03-16
  • LETA/BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS - Lithuania has temporarily suspended vaccination with the COVID-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca.

“Within the last hour, I received a recommendation from the State Medicines Control Agency, which, like other EU countries, has recommended suspending vaccination with AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine as a precautionary measure until the final conclusions of the European Medicines Agency on the safety of this vaccine are available,” Health Minister Arunas Dulkys said at a news conference on Tuesday.

“This means that we will take the agency’s recommendation into consideration,” he added.

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) will hold a special meeting on this vaccine on Thursday.

Gytis Andrulionis, director of the State Medicines Control Agency, said that the decision on the suspension had been made after receiving three reports about incidents of thromboembolism.

“Over the last few days … we have received three reports about serious suspected unexpected adverse reactions related to thromboembolic events among patients vaccinated with AstraZeneca’s vaccine in Lithuania,” he said.

“We now do not have any proofs whether those events were triggered by the vaccine or it was just a coincidence in time after vaccination. We send all those data to the joint network and they are being assessed jointly by the EMA,” Andrulionis added.

As reported, as an additional precaution, Latvian health authorities - the Center for Disease Prevention and Control, the National Immunization Council, the State Agency of Medicines and the Health Inspectorate - on Tuesday recommended a temporary suspension of vaccination with the AstraZeneca vaccine against Covid-19 in Latvia.

According to the State Agency of Medicines, the decision was made on the basis of reports from individual European Union countries on thromboembolism and similar cases observed in various periods after receiving the vaccine.