Fresh concerns over AstraZeneca roll-out

THERE are fresh concerns over the roll-out of the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine here following a decision by the Irish government yesterday (Tuesday) to cancel immunisation clinics planning to use the drug there.
GPs and pharmacies across Fermanagh have been supplied with the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine for roll-out in the community while the vaccination centre at the Fermanagh Lakeland Forum is offering doses of the Pfizer drug.
The Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine has been dogged by problems and controversy ever since it was brought to market before Christmas.
However, the British Medical Association’s spokesperson in Fermanagh, Dr Brendan O’Hare, who has over 16,000 patients in his Western Rural Healthcare practice including GP surgeries in Ederney and Castlederg said he is “comfortable with the stance taken here.”
He was referring to the current policy in the North to not offer the AstraZeneca vaccine to the under 30s. He also added that the benefits of taking the vaccine still outweigh the risks for the over-60s age range.
Dr O’Hare also pointed to evidence from the UK which indicates that some 7,000 deaths from Covid have been avoided due to the success of the nationwide vaccination programme and that in his practice they have had no issues across his patient-base irrespective of age to date.

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