AstraZeneca Vaccine still off Limits for Norway’s Health Authorities

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Norway’s health authorities remain cautious about the use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine and are holding off on reinstating its use.

“There is still great uncertainty about possible serious side effects,’’ a statement from the health authority Folkehelseinstitutt FHI said, on Friday.

“In the FHI’s assessment, it is appropriate to spend more time gaining further knowledge about these serious incidents.’’

The FHI stressed that the decision was based on incidents in Norway.

Norway, like many other countries, had stopped giving the drug a fortnight ago, because blood clots had occurred in some vaccinated people.

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Four people have died in Norway after being vaccinated, although a direct connection has not yet been proven.

A national expert group is now investigating the cases; in addition, there is close cooperation with neighboring countries.

Denmark extended its pause on using the AstraZeneca vaccine by three weeks on Thursday.

In Iceland, Finland and Sweden, it is only administered to older people because no serious side effects have occurred in this age group so far.

In Norway, the number of people infected with the Coronavirus has risen rapidly in recent weeks.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, on Friday, therefore, extended its travel recommendations until May 15.

Non-essential travel abroad is strongly discouraged and those who travel anyway must stay in a quarantine hotel for 10 days after their return.

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