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VACCINE

Ten blood clot cases found in Denmark after AstraZeneca vaccination

A total of ten cases of blood clots have been found in Denmark in people subsequent to taking the AstraZeneca vaccine against Covid-19.

Ten blood clot cases found in Denmark after AstraZeneca vaccination
Photo: Yves Herman/Reuters/Ritzau Scanpix

The number was confirmed in a Danish Medicines Agency statement on Thursday.

The agency stressed that it has not yet established a connection between the vaccine and blood clots.

“The Danish Medicines Agency is processing 10 reports filed in which blood clots or symptoms of blood clots occurring after vaccination are described in the reports,” the agency wrote in the statement.

“It cannot be concluded at the current time whether there may be a connection with the vaccine, because the cases have not been fully processed,” it added.

A total of 140,000 people in Denmark have received at least one dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine.

One person in Denmark, a 60-year-old woman has been reported to have died after receiving the vaccine. The woman was reported to have had an unusual medical history with a low number of platelets, blood clots in large and small blood vessels and bleedings.

It is not known whether her death is connected to the vaccine.

Other countries in Europe, including Denmark’s neighbour Norway, have also reported deaths in people who have recently received the AstraZeneca vaccine.

A group of medical experts at Oslo University Hospital said on Thursday that blood clots in three health workers who took the AstraZeneca vaccine were triggered by an immune system response.

The European Medicines Agency concluded on Thursday that the AstraZeneca vaccine was a “safe and effective” tool in the battle against Covid-19 but its investigation could not rule out whether the jab had caused rare cases of blood clotting.

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COVID-19

Did Sweden’s state epidemiologist really get a big job at the WHO?

For his supporters, it was well-deserved, for his detractors a case of failing upwards. But when Sweden's Public Health Agency announced this month that state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell was taking a job at the World Health Organisation, both sides assumed it was true.

Did Sweden's state epidemiologist really get a big job at the WHO?

Now, it seems, the job might not be there after all. 

At the start of this month, Sweden’s Public Health Agency announced that Anders Tegnell was resigning to take up a post coordinating vaccine work with the World Health Organisation in Geneva. 

“I’ve worked with vaccines for 30 years and have at the same time always been inspired by international issues,” Tegnell said in the release. “Now I will have the chance to contribute to this comprehensive international work.”

During the first and second waves of the Covid-19 pandemic, Tegnell shot immediately from obscurity into the spotlight, gaining such celebrity status in Sweden that one fan had his profile tattooed onto his arm.

Internationally he was hailed by lockdown sceptics for his reasoned arguments against overly restrictive measures to control the spread of the virus. 

His new WHO appointment was reported all over the world. 

But on Tuesday, the Svenska Daglabdet newspaper revealed that the job had not yet been awarded. A spokesperson for the WHO said at a press conference in Geneva that “there is some confusion”, and that “this is an internal question.” 

According to the newspaper, there is even “a certain level of irritation” behind the scenes at the WHO that Sweden acted too soon and dispatched Tegnell to a job that did not actually exist yet. 

“We have received an offer from Sweden, which is still under discussion,” the organisation’s press spokesperson, Fadela Chaib, told the newspaper. 

On Thursday, the Public Health Agency’s press chief Christer Janson conceded that there had been a mistake and that the negotiation had not been completed.  

“We believed it was done, but it wasn’t,” he told Expressen in an interview. “It’s been a much longer process to get this completed than we thought. There’s been a misunderstanding and we regret that.” 

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