Cyprus will receive a quantity of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine Wednesday afternoon but it is unknown if it will be distributed due to the six cases of blood clots reported in the US.
CNA has learnt that the Ministry of Health’s Pharmaceutical Warehouses have been instructed to receive 2,400 quantities of the vaccine and wait until final decisions are taken.
Health Ministry officials have told CNA that there is no official information if the vaccine will be made available for the general public. “For the time being, it will be on standby”, the officials added.
The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has initiated review of Johnson & Johnson’s (J&J) single-shot Covid-19 vaccine over reports of rare blood clots in six individuals in the US.
In a statement the EMA said it is not clear that there is a link between the vaccine and the incidents and its safety committee is continuing a review announced last week. About 6.8 million people in the U.S. have received the J&J shot.
European commissioner for Health, Stella Kyriakides, wrote on Twitter that developments with the J&J vaccine in the US are under close monitoring” by the bloc’s medicines regulator. She also noted that “developments with the J&J vaccine in the US are under close monitoring by @EMA_News and its pharmacovigilance bodies, with an open line to the @US_FDA and other international regulators. EU rollout has been paused by the company”, adding “vaccine safety is always paramount”.
EU countries had expected deliveries of some 55 million J&J doses this quarter.
It should be noted that after examining rare cases of clotting in those who received the AstraZeneca shot, the EMA warned last week of a link but said that the vaccine’s benefits still outweigh its risks.