JCVI member brands decision by EU countries to pause Oxford/AstraZeneca jab 'baffling'

16 March 2021, 08:29

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

The decision for European nations to suspend Oxford/AstraZeneca jab is 'baffling' a JCVI member has told LBC.

Professor Robert Read, who sits on the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), told LBC he didn't think it was right to pause the Oxford AstraZeneca jab.

Speaking to Nick Ferrari in a personal capacity the medical expert said while some European countries were pausing the use of the jab, this was contrary to advice from the European Medicines Agency and the World Health Organisation.

The conversation comes after Germany, France, Italy and Spain suspended use of the Oxford-AstraZeneca jab.

There have been reports of a small number of people with blood clots after having it - but UK safety regulators say there's no evidence of a link.

Professor Read told LBC he found it to be a "curious decision."

"I think it's all a little bit disappointing, perplexing, confusing and baffling."

He said he could assure LBC listeners that the signals were being taken seriously and any possibility of problems had been examined.

The scientist revealed to LBC that deep vein thrombosis was "really common" within the UK population.

He said one person per thousands had "some form of blood clot somewhere."

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) said "many thousands of people" develop blood clots every year in the EU and "the number of thromboembolic events overall in vaccinated people seems not to be higher than that seen in the general population".

Boris Johnson said there was "no reason at all" to stop the vaccine's rollout and Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said she would accept her jab "without hesitation" when called on.

Northern Ireland's chief medical officer Dr Michael McBride also urged people to retain confidence in the jab as he received his first dose of the AstraZeneca version on Monday.