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  • About the use of Vaxzevria (AstraZeneca) in Norway

About the use of Vaxzevria (AstraZeneca) in Norway

A summary from NIPH about the use of the coronavirus vaccine Vaxzevria from AstraZeneca in Norway.

A summary from NIPH about the use of the coronavirus vaccine Vaxzevria from AstraZeneca in Norway.


Background

The coronavirus vaccine Vaxzevria from AstraZeneca is a viral vector vaccine. It was used in Norway from 8 February 2021 until 11 March 2021.

Vaccination with Vaxzevria from AstraZeneca was suspended in Norway on 11 March 2021 following reports from Austria and Denmark about a possible severe side effect after vaccination. This involved unusual blood clots, low platelet counts and haemorrhages after vaccination, in most cases in a blood vessel that carries blood from the brain. Shortly after the decision, 5 cases were discovered in Norway, of which 3 died. The condition has been named vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia (abbreviated VITT), also called thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (abbreviated TTS).

Approximately 135,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine were administered in Norway from the second week of February until it was suspended on 11 March. Almost all doses were given to healthcare professionals aged 18-64 years. On 26 March, the NIPH decided to extend the suspension until 15 April in order to further investigate the connection between the vaccine and this serious condition.

Following a review and evaluation of available data and the situation in Norway, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health published a recommendation on 15 April that the AstraZeneca vaccine should be removed from the national immunisation programme.

On 10 May, the Government decided that the AstraZeneca vaccine would no longer be used in Norway and was removed from the coronavirus immunisation programme.  

The Norwegian Institute of Public Health provided information on further vaccination of those who received the first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine:

More about the severe side effects following Vaxzevria

On 7 April, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) concluded that there is an association between these cases and the AstraZeneca vaccine. Blood clots, low platelet counts and haemorrhages are now described as a very serious and rare side effect in the product information. The EMA considers that the vaccine still has a positive benefit-risk ratio, but that the authorities in each country must assess the benefit-risk against the situation in their country. With the existing situation in Norway, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health considered that the risk of the rare but serious side effects could outweigh the benefits of being vaccinated for those groups who had not yet been vaccinated through the coronavirus immunisation programme.

Here is an overview of news, advice and information published about Vaxzevria - if there is an English version, you will find it in the list below, otherwise the Norwegian version is listed.

News:

Information letters

Information note

History

Artikkel opprettet som samler alle informasjon om Vaxzevria vaksinen fra AstraZeneca. Tekst for helsepersonell flyttet hitt fra vaksinasjonveilederen.