Ethiopia vows not to ban use of AstraZeneca vaccine despite concern

Ethiopia will not ban the use of AstraZeneca vaccine despite concern in some European countries over blood clotting after receiving the shot, Yakob Seman, Medical Service Head of the Ethiopia’s Ministry of Health has said on Monday.

Some eight European countries last week suspended the use of the Covid-19 vaccine over fear of blood clot side effects.

Ireland, Denmark, Austria, Bulgaria, Iceland, Italy and Norway are among the countries that have suspended the use of the vaccine.

Ethiopia began administering the AstraZeneca vaccine on Sunday and said it would continue rolling out the vaccine to its citizens, as there was no evidence it was unsafe for use.

The Ethiopian Ministry of Health echoed the World Health Organization’s statement that there is no evidence linking the vaccine to blood clotting.

“Therefore, Ethiopia will continue to provide the vaccine to its citizens as long as there is no scientific evidence that the vaccine can cause blood clots,” Yakob said.

The vaccine was launched at the federal level in Addis Ababa and other regions of Ethiopia on Sunday.

Ethiopia has received 2.2 million dozes of the vaccine in the first round last week from India’s Serum Institute.

Ethiopia plans to vaccinate 20 percent of its over 110 million population by December 2024, according to the Ministry of Health.

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