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Alberta & Ontario stop offering AstraZeneca's COVID vaccine

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  • Alberta & Ontario stop offering AstraZeneca's COVID vaccine


    May 11, 20215:14 PM EDT
    Two Canadian provinces stop offering AstraZeneca's COVID vaccine
    Nia WilliamsAllison Martell

    The Canadian provinces of Alberta and Ontario said on Tuesday they would stop offering first doses of AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine, with Ontario citing evidence that the risk of rare blood clots is somewhat higher than previously estimated.

    Alberta said it took the same step only because it was unclear when more shipments of the vaccine might arrive, and not due to concern about side effects.

    Officials in Ontario said roughly one in 60,000 people who received the vaccine in the province, eight in total, developed the complication, which involves blood clots accompanied by a low level of platelets, cells in the blood that help it to clot.

    Regulators and expert groups in Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom and Europe had previously estimated that the risk was between one in 95,000 and one in 130,000.

    "We maintain that those who received their first dose with the AstraZeneca vaccine did absolutely the right thing to prevent illness and protect their families, loved ones and communities," said Ontario's Chief Medical Officer David Williams...