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Covid-19 vaccination programme: SL to continue with AstraZeneca vaccine

  • Patient with South African strain undergoing treatment: Sudarshini  

By Yumiko Perera

 

Sri Lanka is to continue with the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, despite the use of the vaccination being suspended in some countries following post-vaccination complications.

Several European countries such as Norway, Denmark, and Iceland have temporarily halted the administration of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, citing several cases of severe blood clots. The decision had been taken as a precautionary measure, it was reported.

Speaking with The Sunday Morning, State Minister of Primary Healthcare, Epidemics, and Covid Disease Control Dr. Sudarshini Fernandopulle said: “There haven’t been any reports of major complications after the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covishield vaccine was being administered. The two deaths in Divulapitiya have not been linked to the use of the vaccine. Hence, we would be continuing with the vaccination drive using the said vaccine, until it is clinically proven otherwise.”

Meanwhile, commenting on the new South African strain of Covid-19 being found in Sri Lanka, she added: “Just one case has been identified in Sri Lanka so far. It was a person who had returned from Tanzania, who is currently under quarantine.”

Noting that there is no risk of the new South African strain being spread among the community, Dr. Fernandopulle pointed out that there was no reason to panic. “Even within Sri Lanka, you could eventually discover certain mutations of Covid-19,” she explained.