Germany is resuming vaccinations with the coronavirus vaccine made by AstraZeneca, following a recommendation by European regulators that the benefits of the jab outweigh the risks.
The European Medicines Agency said on Thursday that the vaccine is safe – but added that it cannot rule out a link to a small number of rare blood clots reported on the continent, and patients should be told to look out for any warning signs.
The move paved the way for more than a dozen European countries, which had suspended use of the jab over the past week, to begin using it again.
Authorities in Berlin said two large vaccination centres that offer the AstraZeneca vaccine to people in the German capital will reopen on Friday, and people whose appointments were cancelled this week will be able to get the vaccine over the weekend without making a new one.
The suspension of the AstraZeneca jab further slowed Germany’s already sluggish vaccine campaign this week. So far, about 10 million doses have been administered in the country, with 8.4% of the population receiving at least one jab and 3.7% getting both doses.
Germany’s disease control agency reported 17,482 newly confirmed cases of Covid-19 overnight, and 226 deaths.