While some countries are struggling to get more vaccines, others are wondering what to do with the doses they requested. But they will not use it anymore due to security concerns.
Several countries have imposed restrictions on the use of the Oxford-AstraZeneca and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccines due to the risk of developing blood clots.
a Denmark It completely discontinued AstraZeneca, sparking a wave of interest in doses that would not be used in that country.
Which vaccine is this? Oxford AstraZeneca
Why does this happen?
There is growing anxiety In rare casesAnd sometimes fatal blood clots, especially in young adults. However, health regulators around the world Insist that the overall benefits of the vaccine in preventing Covid-19 outweigh the risks of side effects.
According to the data from the Medicines Regulator in United kingdomIf 10 million people receive the AstraZeneca vaccine, it is estimated that 40 will develop strokes. About 10 people will die, that is The risk is one in a million.
It is practically the same as the risk of dying in a traffic accident during a trip of 400 km.
Soeren Brostroem, Director of the Danish Health Agency, said the decision to stop distributing AstraZeneca vaccine was difficult – Photo: EPA
However, the health authorities in Denmark have taken a decision to stop using the AstraZeneca vaccine. They explained that there are other vaccines available and that the epidemic is under control in the country and that they are acting with caution in response to “a known risk of serious harmful effects.”
The decision means that 2.4 million doses of AstraZeneca Which Denmark agreed to buy will be withdrawn from circulation.
Additionally, the link between the Janssen vaccine and the occurrence of rare blood clots is also being investigated.
Which vaccine is this? Janssen (Johnson & Johnson;)
Janssen vaccine use has also been suspended South Africa. This vaccine was chosen for use in the African country after that Studies indicate that it provided greater protection against the local variant Covid-19.
AstraZeneca, which is less effective against this alternative, has already lost its popularity in South Africa, which also led to Unused vaccines.
To avoid waste, South Africa sold 1 million doses of AstraZeneca to Distributed in 14 African countries.
Some people are hesitant to get the AstraZeneca vaccine, despite the low risks – Image: Getty Images via BBC
Can these vaccines be used elsewhere?
In theory, yes. Countries are willing to sell or donate vaccines they no longer need.
On April 15, the Director of the World Health Organization (WHO) for Europe (WHO), Hans Kluge, suggested that Denmark was trying to do just that.
“I understand that the Danish Foreign Ministry is ready or is really looking for options to share AstraZeneca vaccines with the poorest countries,” Kluge said in a statement.
Some neighbors in Denmark offered to receive unwanted doses.
“We have fewer vaccines than people who want to be vaccinated,” said Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonetti. “Therefore, Lithuania has expressed its willingness to receive doses of AstraZeneca as often as Denmark wishes to participate.”
In a tweet, Czech Interior Minister Jan Hamatsk said he had instructed a diplomat to announce his country’s interest in “purchasing all AstraZeneca vaccines from Denmark”.
The Danish government has not commented yet.
The Kovacs consortium relies on money and vaccines donated by rich countries – Photo: Reuters
Meanwhile, these vaccines will be stored. AstraZeneca and Janssen vaccines It has the advantage that it can be stored at refrigerator temperatureThis makes it easier to transport compared to the Pfizer vaccine, which must be stored at -70 degrees.
However, Vaccines have an expiration date, Which varies by the manufacturer of the immune system.
How many vaccines have not been used?
There is no global record, but regional data provides an overview. Denmark, for example, responded 202,920 doses of astrazinica Figures from the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDP) appear as of April 15.
who are they, 150.671 doses It was administered 52249 remained unused.
The picture is similar across Europe, with many countries restricting AstraZeneca and Janssen vaccines to older adults.
Data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also shows that many U.S. states are experiencing an overdose.
More than 20% of the vaccines purchased have yet to be administered in states such as Alabama (37%), Alaska (35%), Vermont (27%) and North Carolina (24%).
Health experts say so Unused capacity indicates that some areas may have residents unwilling to vaccinate.
Is there a plan to share the remaining vaccines?
It An international consortium aims to ensure that vaccines are shared fairly Among all nations, rich and poor. Led by Who is the With the participation of the Global Vaccine Alliance (Gavi) and the Coalition for Innovation in Epidemic Preparedness (Cepi).
By the end of 2021, Covax expects to deliver more than 2 billion doses in 190 countries.
Part of this scheme includes redistributing surplus vaccines from rich countries to the poor.
For example, the UK that bought About 450 million dosesIt promised to donate most of its “surplus” to the poorest countries. Other, wealthier nations have shown similar solidarity initiatives.
However, they faced criticism because, so far, none of them has explained exactly when you will receive the overdoses and how many intend to donate.
At least for now, rich countries are focusing on vaccinating their populations, while providing financial resources for the Covax program.
How and when can surplus vaccines be shared?
The BBC asked Gavi if he had a record of the number of surplus vaccines promised by Covax. This was his response:
“Given the context of short-term limited supply, the donated doses from oversupply countries that are equitably allocated through Covax will be an important part of the solution to get fast and fair access globally. High-end economies. Income upon sharing overdoses and we look forward to announcing our first deals soon. ”
So there are agreements to exchange surplus vaccines, but there is still no specific information about when and who is getting what, which is frustrating for many.