Canada – Ontario halts distribution of AstraZeneca over blood clot issues
Canada’s most populous province Ontario has halted the administration of doses of AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine over concerns related to a rare adverse reaction in the form of blood clots. The announcement that the province will no longer roll out the vaccine as part of its inoculation programme was made by its chief medical officer of health Dr David Williams.
The province is waiting for more data before making any further announcements on second doses of AstraZeneca or whether the vaccine can be paired with a different COVID-19 shot. Select pharmacies in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area, as well as Ottawa and Windsor-Essex, have started to receive doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines.
It’s not clear when the pause on vaccines could be lifted, but officials said there would be advice coming “in the very near future” for those who have already had a dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.
The Ontario government reported there are 49,280 doses of the shot remaining in the province. Dr. Dirk Huyer, the province’s coordinator of COVID-19 response, said it’s not clear when additional doses might be received from the federal government.