EMA: Johnson & Johnson can be used without restrictions

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The Corona vaccine from U.S. manufacturer Johnson & Johnson can be used in the EU without restriction, according to a review by the EU Medicines Agency (EMA). The active ingredient could trigger blood clots in very rare cases, the EMA announced Tuesday in Amsterdam.

Similar to AstraZeneca
Experts on the EMA’s safety committee reviewed these cases in an accelerated procedure. However, the agency had stressed that the U.S. manufacturer’s vaccines can be used without restriction. Cerebral vein thrombosis also occurs in very rare cases with the vaccine from Swedish-British manufacturer AstraZeneca. The cases are very similar for both vaccines, they say. Because of possible serious side effects, Johnson & Johnson has postponed delivery of its Corona vaccine in Europe. The first doses had previously arrived in Austria.

The U.S. manufacturer’s vaccine, one dose of which is sufficient for full immunization, is not a “dominant part of the Austrian vaccination schedule,” Kollaritsch said. The side effects observed in the U.S. after vaccination would have been extremely rare, the expert stressed. They were “six cases of exceptional thromboembolic events per 6.8 million doses vaccinated.”

Whether and to what extent Johnson & Johnson will be used in the fight against the Corona pandemic if it is released in Austria will be decided by the National Vaccination Panel. “In the decision-making process, the expert panel will be guided by the EMA’s European guidelines,” the health ministry affirmed.

Johnson & Johnson has contractually agreed to supply the EU with 200 million vaccine doses in 2021. Janssen Austria – the Austrian branch of Janssen, the pharmaceutical division of Johnson & Johnson – pointed out in a press release Tuesday that the safety and well-being of those vaccinated is its “top priority.” Consequently, it said it supports testing for possible, rare side effects to ensure proper diagnosis, appropriate treatment and expedited reporting in those cases. It continues to “believe in the positive risk-benefit profile of our vaccine,” will collaborate with medical experts and global health authorities, and will work to continue vaccination to end the global pandemic.

— source: kleinezeitung.at/picture: aerzteblatt.de

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