Ontario Health Minister gets AstraZeneca shot today before Health Canada changes recommendations

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Sources have told CBC that NACI intends to pause the use of AstraZeneca in people under the age of 55 following reports of rare blood clots in some immunized patients. If anyone who has received AstraZeneca has questions or concerns, they should call 811.

"It's important to note that no such blood clot abnormalities or VIPID have been reported in Canada, " she said.

AstraZeneca doses have been administered at medical clinics and pharmacies across the province, and had been directed by two priority lists for those with underlying medical conditions in the 18-64 age range.

"The higher the risk is related to COVID, the more beneficial that vaccine becomes, even if there is a risk of blood clots associated with it", she said.

"Typically, the symptoms happen 4 to 20 days after immunization and the symptoms can mirror the symptoms of a stroke or heart attack."

Islanders who have already received one dose of AstraZeneca may end up getting their second dose from Pfizer or Moderna, depending on what is learned in the weeks ahead about AstraZeneca.

Reimer said they have an excellent monitoring system in place for adverse events, but suggested that the immune response that elicits the blood clotting is very serious, even with treatment, and can have severe consequences. She said catching it early is beneficial.

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The AstraZeneca vaccine was approved for all people over 18 on February 26, but NACI then said there weren't enough seniors included in clinical trials to be confident about how the vaccine would perform on people over the age of 65. Those with appointments who are under 55 will see those appointments cancelled.

Last week, Denmark extended its suspension of the AstraZeneca vaccine for another three weeks and Sweden has chose to use it only on people older than 65.

The results came as infections in the USA have begun to rise again, leading CDC director Rochelle Walensky to describe "a recurring feeling I have of impending doom".

Australia reported eight new COVID-19 locally-spread cases in its populous Queensland state, a day after 2 million people entered a snap three-day lockdown in the state capital Brisbane. "This is a pause while we wait for more information".

At a press conference on Monday, Ontario Premier Doug Ford said he "won't hesitate" to stop the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine "if it's going to put anyone in harm".

"Based on the approval by the EMA, first drug product batches of the vaccine can now be delivered to partner sites for sterile fill and finish, before distribution to the European Union and countries worldwide".

This applies to both the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine and COVISHIELD from Serum Institute of India.

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