France approves AstraZeneca for patients over the age of 65
France is to expand its use of the Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine after additional clinical data proved its efficacy among people aged over 65, reversing the position Paris took a month ago. The French government partly reversed on Monday its decision not to use the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for the elderly.
“People affected by co-morbidities can be vaccinated with AstraZeneca, including those aged between 65 and 74,” the health minister said. Last month France approved use of the vaccine for under-65s only, citing lack of data for older people.
The Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is widely used across the UK, but several EU countries are still limiting it to the under-65s, including Germany. The government also endorsed a recommendation from the country’s High Authority for Health (HAS) to administer a single dose of the vaccine to people who have previously contracted the deadly virus, becoming the first country to do so.
France’s change of heart coincides with a real-world study conducted in Britain that found the COVID-19 vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford University-AstraZeneca are highly effective in protecting elderly people from the disease after receiving just one shot.