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COVID-19: Here’s a list of all the vaccination clinics in B.C. – Vancouver Sun

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These are the clinics running in the Vancouver Coastal Health, Fraser Health, Interior Health, Northern Health and Vancouver Island Health regions.

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British Columbia begins Phase 2 of its COVID-19 vaccination rollout with age-based immunizations on March 15.

On March 8, all five health authorities in B.C. will begin using a phone-in system, where those aged 90-and-over and Indigenous people age 65-and-over can begin booking their immunization appointments at clinics within their health regions.

The phone lines will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week.

Before dialing to book your appointment, it’s recommended you have a pen and paper handy, as well as your personal health number, full name, date of birth, postal code and phone number.

A call centre agent will confirm your appointment date and time at the location nearest to you.

If you are not sure which health region you are served by, you can find out by clicking HERE.

Here is a list of all the provincial COVID-19 immunization clinics that have been announced:

READ MORE:Here’s how to get your vaccination shot in B.C.

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Vancouver Coastal Health

Vancouver Coastal Health oversees health care for 1.25 million people in Vancouver, Richmond, the North Shore and Coast Garibaldi, Sea-to-Sky, Sunshine Coast, Powell River, Bella Bella and Bella Coola.

Register for COVID-19 vaccination by phone at 1-877-587-5767

Vancouver

• ASK Friendship Centre
Address: 2177 W 42nd Ave.

• Creekside Community Centre
Address: 1 Athletes Way

• Italian Cultural Centre
Address: 3075 Slocan St.

• Kerrisdale Community Centre – Seniors Centre
Address: 5851 West Blvd.

• Sunset Community Centre
Address: 6810 Main St.

• Vancouver Community College Test Collection Site – Impark Lot #865
Address: 1155 E. Broadway

• West End Community Centre
Address: 870 Denman St.

North and West Vancouver

• ICBC Test Collection Site
Address: 255 Lloyd Ave., North Vancouver

• West Vancouver Community Centre
Address: 2121 Marine Dr., West Vancouver

Richmond

• East Richmond Community Hall
Address: 12360 Cambie Rd.

• Jackson Lam Adult Day Centre / Austin Harris Assisted Living
Address: 5411 Moncton St.

• River Rock Casino Resort (The Show Theatre)
Address: 8811 River Rd.

Sea to Sky

• Bowen Island Community School
Address: 1041 Mt Gardner Rd., Bowen Island

• Pemberton Community Centre
Address: 7390 Cottonwood St., Pemberton

• Squamish 55 Seniors Centre
Address: 5604 Trail Ave., Squamish

• Whistler Convention Centre
Address: 4010 Whistler Way, Whistler

Sunshine Coast

• Powell River Recreation Complex
Address: 5001 Joyce Ave.

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• Royal Canadian Legion Branch 109
Address: 747 Gibsons Way, Gibsons

• Royal Canadian Legion Branch 112
Address: 12829 Lillies Lake Rd., Madeira Park

• Sechelt Seniors Centre
Address: 5604 Trail Ave., Sechelt

Central Coast

• Bella Coola General Hospital
Address: 1025 Elcho St., Bella Coola

Indigenous focused

• Britannia Community Centre
Address: 1661 Napier St., Vancouver

• Lu’ma Medical Centre
Address: 2970 Nanaimo St., Vancouver

• Native Education College
Address: 205 East 5th Ave., Vancouver

• Vancouver Aboriginal Health Society
Address: 449 E Hastings St. Vancouver


Fraser Health

Fraser Health is the province’s largest health region, serving 1.8 million people in 20 communities from Burnaby to the Fraser Canyon (including Abbotsford, Agassiz, Anmore, Belcarra, Boston Bar, Burnaby, Chilliwack, Coquitlam, Langley, Delta, District of Kent, Harrison Hot Springs, Hope,Maple Ridge, Mission,Pitt Meadows, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Surrey, White Rock and New Westminster).

Register for COVID-19 vaccination by phone at 1-855-755-2455 or online at Fraserhealth.ca/vaccinebooking.

Abbotsford

• Abbotsford Ag Rec
Address: 32470 Haida Drive, Building 1

• Mamele’awt Community Indigenous Centre
Address: 3277 Gladwin Road

Agassiz

• Agassiz Public Health Office
Address: 7243 Pioneer Avenue

Burnaby

• Burnaby COVID-19 Testing and Immunization Centre
Address: 6110 Boundary Road

• Burnaby Hospital, 2nd Floor
Lecture Theatres A and B
Address: 3935 Kincaid Street

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Chilliwack

• Chilliwack COVID-19 Testing and Immunization Centre
Address: 9090 Newman Road

• Tzeachten Community Hall
Address: 45855 Promontory Road

Coquitlam/Tri-Cities

• Coquitlam COVID-19 Testing and Immunization Centre
Address: Coquitlam Park and Ride (entry off of Mariner Way), 2796 Aberdeen Ave

• Douglas College – Coquitlam
Address: 1250 Pinetree Way

Delta

• Delta COVID-19 Testing and Immunization Centre
Address: 4470 Clarence Taylor Crescent

Hope

• Hope COVID-19 Testing and Immunization Centre
Address: 1275 7th Avenue

• Hope Public Health Office
Address: 444 Park Street

Langley

• Langley COVID-19 Testing and Immunization Centre
Address: KPU parking lot

Maple Ridge

• Golden Ears United Church Hall (Fraser River Indigenous Society)
Address: 22165 Dewdney Trunk Road

• Haney Place Mall
Address: 11900 Haney Place

Mission

• Mission COVID-19 Testing and Immunization Centre
Address: 7324 Hurd St.

• Mission Friendship Centre
Address: 33150A 1st Avenue

New Westminster

• Douglas College – New Westminster
Address: 700 Royal Avenue

North Surrey

• Surrey North
Address: 10025 King George Boulevard

South Surrey/White Rock

• South Surrey COVID-19 Testing and Immunization Centre
Address: South Surrey Park and Ride lot, 3800 King George Boulevard

• Fraser Region Aboriginal Friendship Centre (FRAFCA)
Address: A101-10095 Whalley Boulevard

• Surrey 66 COVID-19 Testing and Immunization Centre
Address: 14577 66th Ave.

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Island Health

Island Health serves more than 850,000 people on Vancouver Island, the islands in the Salish Sea and the Johnstone Strait, and the mainland communities north of Powell River and south of Rivers Inlet.

Register for COVID-19 vaccination by phone at 1-833-348-4787

Campbell River & Area

• Campbell River Campbell River Community Centre
Address: 401 11 Ave.

Comox Valley & Area

• Comox Valley Hospital, Ambulance Bay
Address: 101 Lerwick Rd, Courtenay

• Comox Valley Health Unit
Address: 961 England Ave, Courtenay

Cowichan Valley/Duncan

• Cowichan Community Centre Gym
Address: 2687 James St, Duncan

Victoria/Sooke/Saanich Peninsula

• Archie Browning Sports Centre
Address: 1151 Esquimalt Rd, Victoria

• Mary Winspear Centre
Address: 2243 Beacon Ave, Sidney

• UVic McKinnon Gym
Address: 11 Gabriola Road, Saanich

• SEAPARC Leisure Complex
Address: 2168 Phillips Rd., Sooke

• Eagle Ridge Arena
Address: 1089 Langford Pkwy., Victoria

Nanaimo & Area

• Ladysmith Urgent Care Centre
Address: 1111 4th Ave., Ladysmith

• Beban Park
Address: 2300 Bowen Rd., Nanaimo

• Cedar Community Centre
Address: 2388 Cedar Rd., Nanaimo

Oceanside

• Parksville Community Centre
Address: 132 Jensen Ave E., Parksville

Port Alberni — West Coast

• Alberni Athletic Hall
Address: 3727 Roger Street., Port Alberni

• Tofino Public Health Unit
265 First St, Tofino

Northern Island – Mt. Waddington

• Port Alice Health Unit
Address: 1090 Marine Dr., Port Alice

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• Port Hardy Health Unit
Address: 7070 Market St., Port Hardy

• Port McNeill Health Unit
Address: 1775 Grenville Pl., Port McNeill

Salt Spring Island

• Salt Spring Island Health Centre
Address: 160 Fulford-Ganges Road


Interior Health

Interior Health is the health authority for more than 800,000 people living in B.C.’s southern interior, which includes East Kootenay, Kootenay Boundary, Okanagan and Thompson Cariboo Shuswap regions.

Register for COVID-19 vaccination by phone at 1-877-740-7747

100 Mile House

• South Cariboo Health Centre
Address: 555 D Cedar Ave.

Ashcroft

• Ashcroft Hospital and Community Health Centre
Address: 700 Ash-Cache Creek Hwy.

Alexis Creek

• Alexis Creek Community Hall
Address: 2620 Stum Lk Rd.

Barriere

• Barriere Seniors Centre
Address: 4431 Barriere Town Road.

Big Lake Ranch

• Big Lake Ranch Community Hall
Address: 4056 Lakeview Road

Castlegar

• Selkirk College
Address: 301 Frank Beinder Way

Chase

• Chase Community Hall
Address: 547 Shuswap Ave.

Celista

• Celista Community Centre
Address: 5456 Squilax-Anglemont

Clearwater

• Clearwater Community Health Centre
Address: 640 Park Dr.

Clinton

• Clinton Health & Wellness Centre
Address: 1510 Cariboo Hwy.

Cranbrook

• Cranbrook Curling Centre
Address: 1777 2nd St. North

Crawford Bay

• Crawford Bay School
Address: 16150 Walkley Rd.

Creston

• Creston Valley Hospital-ED room A
Address: 312 15th Ave. North

Elkford

• Elkford Health Centre
Address: 212 Alpine Way

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Enderby

• Enderby Seniors Centre
Address: 1101 George St.

Fauquier

• Fauquier Community Hall
Address: 5456 Squilax-Anglemont Rd.

Fernie

• Elk Valley Hospital – Education Rm.
Address: 1505 5 Ave.

Golden

• Golden Curling Club
Address: 1412 9th St. South

Grand Forks

• Grand Forks Curling Rink
Address: 7230 21 St.

Horsefly

• Horsefly Community Hall
Address: 5772 Horsefly Rd.

Invermere

• Invermere Catholic Church
Address: 712 12th Ave.

• Akisqnuk Community Centre
Address: 3050 HW-93

• Shuswap Band Office
Address: 4846 Althamer Road

Kamloops North

• Mcarthur Park Rec. Area
Address: 1655 Island Pkwy

Kamloops South

• Tournament Capital Centre
Address: 910 McGill Rd.

Kaslo

• Victorian Community Health Centre
Address: 673 A Ave.

Kelowna

• Kelowna Health Services Centre
Address: 505 Doyle

• Trinity Hall
Address: 1905 Springfield Rd.

Keremeos

• South Similkameen Health Centre
Address: 700 3rd St.

Kimberley

• Centennial Hall
Address: 525 Archibald St.

Lillooet

• Lillooet Hospital and Health Centre
Address: 951 Murray St.

Merritt

• Merritt Public Health
Address: 3451 Voght St.

Midway

• Midway Health Unit
Address: 540 – 7th Ave

Nakusp

• Arrow Lakes Hospital
Address: 97 1 Ave.

Nelson

• Selkirk College
Address: 820 Tenth St.

Oliver

• Oliver Legion
Address: 6417 Main St.

Osoyoos

• Osoyoos Health Centre
Address: 4816 89th St.

Penticton

• South Okanagan Trade and Convention Centre
Address: 273 Power St.

Princeton

• Riverside Community Centre
Address: 148 Old Hedley Rd.

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Revelstoke

• Revelstoke Community Centre
Address: 600 Campbell Ave.

Salmon Arm

• Salmon Arm Rec. Centre
Address: 170 5th Ave. SE

Summerland

• Summerland Curling Club
Address: 8820 Jubilee Rd.

Sparwood

• Sparwood Health Centre
Address: 570 Pine Ave.

Tatla Lake

• West Chilcotin Health Care Centre

Trail

• Waneta Plaza
Address: 205 8100 Highway 3B

Vernon

• Vernon Rec. Centre
Address: 3310 37th Ave.

West Kelowna

• Westbank Community Centre
Address: 2466 Main St

Williams Lake

• Williams Lake Health Centre
Address: 540 Borland Ave.


Northern Health

Northern Health serves about 300,000 people living an area covering 600,000 square kilometres and includes the communities of Atlin, Burns Lake, Chetwynd, Dawson Creek, Dease Lake, Fort Nelson, Fort St. James, Fort St. John, Fraser Lake, Hazelton, Houston, Kitimat, Mackenzie, Masset, McBride, Prince George, Prince Rupert, Queen Charlotte, Quesnel, Smithers, Stewart, Terrace, Tumbler Ridge, Valemount and Vanderhoof.

Register for COVID-19 vaccination by phone at 1-844-255-7555

Atlin

Atlin residents will be contacted based off the information registered with Northern Health.

Burns Lake & Area

• Lakes District Hospital – Community Entrance
Address: 741 Centre Street, Burns Lake

• Granisle Seniors Centre
Address: 9 Chapman St, Granisle

• Southside Health Centre
Address: Grassy Plains, BC (10 km south of Francois Lake ferry)

Chetwynd & Area

• Primary Clinic Boardroom
Address: 5125 50th St SW, Chetwynd

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Dawson Creek & Area

• Dawson Creek Health Unit – Multipurpose Room
Address: 1001 110 Ave, Dawson Creek

Dease Lake & Area

• Stikine Health Centre
Address: BC-37, Dease Lake

Fort Nelson

• Fort Nelson Recreation Centre
Address: 5500 Alaska Hwy

Fort St. James

• Fort St. James Health Centre
Address: 111-250 Douglas Ave.

Fort St. John

• Fort St. John Health Unit – Multipurpose Room
Address: 10115 110 Ave.

Fraser Lake

• Fraser Lake Community Health Centre
Address: 130 Chowsunket St.

Hazelton

• Erwin Stege Community Centre
Address: 3026 Bowser St., New Hazelton

Houston

• Coast Mountain College
Address: 3221 W 14 St.

Hudson’s Hope

• Hudson’s Hope Health Centre
Address: 10309 Kyllo St.

Kitimat

• Kitimat General Hospital – Multi-purpose Room
Address: 920 Lahakas Blvd S.

Mackenzie

• Mackenzie and District Hospital and Health Centre
Address: 45 Centennial Dr.

Masset – Haida Gwaii North & Area

• Howard Phillips Hall
Address: 1590 Cook St., Masset

• Port Clements Elementary School
Address: 14 Park St, Port Clements

McBride

• McBride Hospital and Health Centre
Address: 1136 5 Ave.

Prince George

• Prince George Conference and Civic Centre
Address: 808 Canada Games Way

Prince Rupert

• Jim Ciccone Civic Centre
Address: 1000 McBride St.

Quesnel

• Quesnel Community Health Centre
Address: 523 Front St.

Smithers

• Coast Mountain College
Address: 3966 2nd Ave.

Stewart

• Stewart Health Centre
Address: 705 Brightwell St.

Terrace

• Terrace Sportsplex
Address: 3320 Kalum St.

Tumbler Ridge

• Tumbler Ridge Medical Clinic
Address: 220 Front St.

Valemount & Area

• Valemount Golden Years Lodge
Address: 1300 Main St., Valemount

Vanderhoof

• Vanderhoof Health Centre
Address: 3299 Hospital Rd.

Village of Queen Charlotte — Haida Gwaii

• Queen Charlotte Community Hall
Address: Bay St, Queen Charlotte

• Tlell – Parks BC, Naikoon Park Headquarters
Address: Queen Charlottes Hwy, Tlell

• Sandspit – Airport
Address: 1 Airport Rd., Sandspit

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CANADA STOCKS – TSX falls 0.14% to 19,201.28

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* The Toronto Stock Exchange’s TSX falls 0.14 percent to 19,201.28

* Leading the index were Stantec Inc <STN.TO​>, up 3.4%, Imperial Oil Ltd​, up 3.3%, and Corus Entertainment Inc​, higher by 2.9%.

* Lagging shares were Aphria Inc​​, down 14.2%, Village Farms International Inc​, down 9.9%, and Aurora Cannabis Inc​, lower by 9.4%.

* On the TSX 91 issues rose and 134 fell as a 0.7-to-1 ratio favored decliners. There were 24 new highs and no new lows, with total volume of 228.0 million shares.

* The most heavily traded shares by volume were Toronto-dominion Bank, Royal Bank Of Canada and Suncor Energy Inc.

* The TSX’s energy group fell 0.32 points, or 0.3%, while the financials sector climbed 2.46 points, or 0.7%.

* West Texas Intermediate crude futures rose 0.52%, or $0.31, to $59.63 a barrel. Brent crude  rose 0.4%, or $0.25, to $63.2 [O/R]

* The TSX is up 10.1% for the year.

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Air Canada signs C$5.9 billion government aid package, agrees to buy Airbus, Boeing jets

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By David Ljunggren and Allison Lampert

OTTAWA/MONTREAL (Reuters) -Air Canada, struggling with a collapse in traffic due to the COVID-19 pandemic, reached a deal on Monday on a long-awaited aid package with the federal government that would allow it to access up to C$5.9 billion ($4.69 billion) in funds.

The agreement – the largest individual coronavirus-related loan that Ottawa has arranged with a company – was announced after the airline industry criticized Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government for dawdling. The United States and France acted much more quickly to help major carriers.

Canada‘s largest carrier, which last year cut over half its workforce, or 20,000 jobs, and other airlines have been negotiating with the government for months on a coronavirus aid package.

In February, Air Canada reported a net loss for 2020 of C$4.65 billion, compared with a 2019 profit of C$1.48 billion.

As part of the deal, Air Canada agreed to ban share buybacks and dividends, cap annual compensation for senior executives at C$1 million a year and preserve jobs at the current level, which is 14,859.

It will also proceed with planned purchases of 33 Airbus SE 220 airliners and 40 Boeing Co 737 MAX airliners.

Chris Murray, managing director, equity research at ATB Capital Markets, said the deal took into account the “specific needs of Air Canada in the short and medium term without being overly onerous.”

He added: “It gives them some flexibility in drawing down additional liquidity as needed.”

Transport Minister Omar Alghabra said the government was still in negotiations with other airlines about possible aid.

Canada, the world’s second-largest nation by area, depends heavily on civil aviation to keep remote communities connected.

Opposition politicians fretted that further delays in announcing aid could result in permanent damage to the country.

Air Canada said it would resume services on nearly all of the routes it had suspended because of COVID-19.

‘SIGNIFICANT LAYER OF INSURANCE’

The deal removes a potential political challenge for the Liberals, who insiders say are set to trigger an election later this year.

The government has agreed to buy C$500 million worth of shares in the airline, at C$23.1793 each, or a 14.2% discount to Monday’s close, a roughly 6% stake.

“Maintaining a competitive airline sector and good jobs is crucially important,” Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland told reporters, adding the equity stake would allow taxpayers to benefit when the airline’s fortunes recovered.

The Canadian government previously approved similar loans for four other companies worth up to C$1.billion, including up to C$375 million to low-cost airline Sunwing Vacations Inc. The government has paid out C$73.47 billion under its wage subsidy program and C$46.11 billion in loans to hard-hit small businesses.

Michael Rousseau, Air Canada‘s president and chief executive officer, said the liquidity “provides a significant layer of insurance for Air Canada.”

Jerry Dias, head of the Unifor private-sector union, described the announcement as “a good deal for everybody.”

Unifor represents more than 16,000 members working in the air transportation sector.

But the Canadian Union of Public Employees, which represents roughly 10,000 Air Canada flight attendants, said the package protected the jobs of current workers rather than the 7,500 members of its union who had been let go by the carrier.

($1=1.2567 Canadian dollars)

(Reporting by David Ljunggren in Ottawa and Allison Lampert in Montreal; Additional reporting by Julie Gordon in Ottawa and Munsif Vengattil in Bengaluru; Editing by Dan Grebler and Peter Cooney)

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U.K. advises limiting AstraZeneca in under-30s amid clot worry

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LONDON —
British authorities recommended Wednesday that the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine not be given to adults under 30 where possible because of strengthening evidence that the shot may be linked to rare blood clots.

The recommendation came as regulators both in the United Kingdom and the European Union emphasized that the benefits of receiving the vaccine continue to outweigh the risks for most people — even though the European Medicines Agency said it had found a “possible link” between the shot and the rare clots. British authorities recommended that people under 30 be offered alternatives to AstraZeneca. But the EMA advised no such age restrictions, leaving it up to its member-countries to decide whether to limit its use.

Several countries have already imposed limits on who can receive the vaccine, and any restrictions are closely watched since the vaccine, which is cheaper and easier to store than many others, is critical to global immunization campaigns and is a pillar of the UN-backed program known as COVAX that aims to get vaccines to some of the world’s poorest countries.

“This is a course correction, there’s no question about that,” Jonathan Van-Tam, England’s deputy chief medical officer, said during a press briefing. “But it is, in a sense, in medicine quite normal for physicians to alter their preferences for how patients are treated over time.”

Van-Tam said the effect on Britain’s vaccination timetable — one of the speediest in the world — should be “zero or negligible,” assuming the National Health Service receives expected deliveries of other vaccines, including those produced by Pfizer and Moderna.

EU and U.K. regulators held simultaneous press conferences Wednesday afternoon to announce the results of investigations into reports of blood clots that sparked concern about the rollout of the AstraZeneca vaccine.

The EU agency described the clots as “very rare” side effects. Dr Sabine Straus, chair of EMA’s Safety Committee, said the best data is coming from Germany where there is one report of the rare clots for every 100,000 doses given, although she noted far fewer reports in the U.K. Still, that’s less than the clot risk that healthy women face from birth control pills, noted another expert, Dr. Peter Arlett.

The agency said most of the cases reported have occurred in women under 60 within two weeks of vaccination — but based on the currently available evidence, it was not able to identify specific risk factors. Experts reviewed several dozen cases that came mainly from Europe and the U.K., where around 25 million people have received the AstraZeneca vaccine.

“The reported cases of unusual blood clotting following vaccination with the AstraZeneca vaccine should be listed as possible side effects of the vaccine,” said Emer Cooke, the agency’s executive director. “The risk of mortality from COVID is much greater than the risk of mortality from these side effects.”

Arlett said there is no information suggesting an increased risk from the other major COVID-19 vaccines.

The EMA’s investigation focused on unusual types of blood clots that are occurring along with low blood platelets. One rare clot type appears in multiple blood vessels and the other in veins that drain blood from the brain.

While the benefits of the vaccine still outweigh the risks, that assessment is “more finely balanced” among younger people who are less likely to become seriously ill with COVID-19, the U.K’s Van-Tam said.

“We are not advising a stop to any vaccination for any individual in any age group,” said Wei Shen Lim, who chairs Britain’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization. “We are advising a preference for one vaccine over another vaccine for a particular age group, really out of the utmost caution rather than because we have any serious safety concerns.”

In March, more than a dozen countries, mostly in Europe, suspended their use of AstraZeneca over the blood clot issue. Most restarted — some with age restrictions — after the EMA said countries should continue using the potentially life-saving vaccine.

Britain, which relies heavily on AstraZeneca, however, continued to use it.

The suspensions were seen as particularly damaging for AstraZeneca because they came after repeated missteps in how the company reported data on the vaccine’s effectiveness and concerns over how well its shot worked in older people. That has led to frequently changing advice in some countries on who can take the vaccine, raising worries that AstraZeneca’s credibility could be permanently damaged, spurring more vaccine hesitancy and prolonging the pandemic.

Dr. Peter English, who formerly chaired the British Medical Association’s Public Health Medicine Committee, said the back-and-forth over the AstraZeneca vaccine globally could have serious consequences.

“We can’t afford not to use this vaccine if we are going to end the pandemic,” he said.

In some countries, authorities have already noted hesitance toward the AstraZeneca shot.

“People come and they are reluctant to take the AstraZeneca vaccine, they ask us if we also use anything else,” said Florentina Nastase, a doctor and co-ordinator at a vaccination centre in Bucharest, Romania. “There were cases in which people (scheduled for the AstraZeneca) didn’t show up, there were cases when people came to the centre and saw that we use only AstraZeneca and refused (to be inoculated).”

Meanwhile, the governor of Italy’s northern Veneto region had said earlier Wednesday that any decision to change the guidance on AstraZeneca would cause major disruptions to immunizations — at a time when Europe is already struggling to ramp them up — and could create more confusion about the shot.

“If they do like Germany, and allow Astra Zeneca only to people over 65, that would be absurd. Before it was only for people under 55. Put yourself in the place of citizens, it is hard to understand anything,” Luca Zaia told reporters.

The latest suspension of AstraZeneca came in Spain’s Castilla y Leon region, where health chief Veronica Casado said Wednesday that “the principle of prudence” drove her to put a temporary hold on the vaccine that she still backed as being both effective and necessary.

French health authorities had said they, too, were awaiting EMA’s conclusions, as were some officials in Asia.

On Wednesday, South Korea said it would temporarily suspend the use of AstraZeneca’s vaccine in people 60 and younger. In that age group, the country is only currently vaccinating health workers and people in long-term care settings.

The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said it would also pause a vaccine rollout to school nurses and teachers that was to begin on Thursday, while awaiting the outcome of the EMA’s review.

But some experts urged perspective. Prof Anthony Harnden, the deputy chair of Britain’s vaccination committee, said that the program has saved at least 6,000 lives in the first three months and will help pave the way back to normal life.

“What is clear it that for the vast majority of people the benefits of the Oxford AZ vaccine far outweigh any extremely small risk,” he said. “And the Oxford AZ vaccine will continue to save many from suffering the devastating effects that can result from a COVID infection.”

Source: – CTV News

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