Denmark Drops AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine Amid Reports of Blood Clots

Denmark Drops AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine Amid Reports of Blood Clots
A dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is prepared in a vaccination center at Newmarket Racecourse, amid the coronavirus disease outbreak in Newmarket, England, on March 26, 2021. (Andrew Couldridge/Reuters)
Jack Phillips

Denmark became the first country in Europe to abandon use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, after the country and more than a dozen other European Union nations suspended its usage.

Denmark’s health agency director, Soren Brostrom, said Denmark won’t use the shot as part of its vaccination campaign—even as the World Health Organization (WHO) and EU’s European Medicines Agency (EMA) have said the benefits of using the AstraZeneca shot outweigh the negatives amid reports of rare blood clots.

“Overall, we must say that the results show that there is a real and serious side effect signal in the vaccine from AstraZeneca,” said Brostrom in a statement. “Based on an overall consideration, we have therefore chosen to continue the vaccination programme for all target groups without this vaccine.”

Noting that it’s been a “difficult decision” to make, Brostrom said the “upcoming target groups for vaccination are less likely to become severely ill from COVID-19,” and officials “must weigh this against the fact that we now have a known risk of severe adverse effects from vaccination with AstraZeneca, even if the risk in absolute terms is slight.”

Danish officials previously said that two people who had received the vaccine against the CCP virus suffered from severe blood clots. One of them died, they said last month.

The CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus is also known as the novel coronavirus.

In March, most of the countries that stopped using the AstraZeneca vaccine ultimately resumed its use.

On April 7, the EMA said in a statement that there’s a “possible link” between rare blood clots and the vaccine, adding that it “is reminding healthcare professionals and people receiving the vaccine to remain aware of the possibility of very rare cases of blood clots combined with low levels of blood platelets occurring within 2 weeks of vaccination.”

“So far, most of the cases reported have occurred in women under 60 years of age within 2 weeks of vaccination. Based on the currently available evidence, specific risk factors have not been confirmed,” it stated.

The decision to not use AstraZeneca’s shot will push back the scheduled conclusion of Denmark’s vaccination scheme to early August from July 25, Danish officials said. Denmark also uses the U.S.-made Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which requires two shots.

Denmark was also the first nation to stop using the vaccine in March.

AstraZeneca officials didn’t immediately respond to a request by The Epoch Times for comment.

AstraZeneca said in March that it “would like to offer its reassurance on the safety of its COVID-19 vaccine based on clear scientific evidence,” adding that “a careful review of all available safety data of more than 17 million people vaccinated in the European Union and UK with COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca has shown no evidence of an increased risk of pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or thrombocytopenia, in any defined age group, gender, batch or in any particular country. ”

This week, U.S. health agencies recommended that the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine be suspended amid reports of blood clots. Former President Donald Trump, in a statement, criticized the decision, saying that he believes it was halted for “possibly political reasons,” as the Food and Drug Administration has more “love for Pfizer.”

Reuters contributed to this report.
Jack Phillips is a breaking news reporter with 15 years experience who started as a local New York City reporter. Having joined The Epoch Times' news team in 2009, Jack was born and raised near Modesto in California's Central Valley. Follow him on X:
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