Public confidence in the Anglo-Swedish jab has been seriously affected by reports linking it to rare, but potentially fatal blood clots, and by conflicting recommendations on its use.
“In Sicily, there is an 80 percent rejection rate for the AstraZeneca vaccine. Every 100 people, 80 say no, ”Musumeci said Saturday night in Catania.
according to various media reports.
Musumeci added: “It is natural” that people are particularly concerned, but we have a duty to believe scientists when they say it is more dangerous.
not to be vaccinated than to be vaccinated ”.
In reality, the president meant “up to 80 percent,” his spokesman Michela Giuffrida told AFP on Sunday, adding, as an example, that in the city of Syracuse the rejection rate was “30 percent.”
A full-scale boycott of the AstraZeneca coup would put Italy’s vaccination plan, already struggling with supply shortages and failed priorities, under further stress.
86 cases out of 25 million
Earlier this week, the European Medical Agency (EMA) said blood clots should be listed as a “very rare” side effect of the AstraZeneca vaccine, but added that the benefits continue to outweigh the risks.
The announcement came after the EMA examined 86 cases of blood clotting, 18 of which were fatal, out of around 25 million people in Europe who received the AstraZeneca vaccine. Most of the cases corresponded to women under 60 years of age.
In response to the findings, Italy, which initially recommended the AstraZeneca vaccine for those in the 18 to 55 age group, its use restricted to persons 60 years of age or older.
Similar measures were taken in other European countries. On Friday, the EU drug regulator also said it was investigating a possible link between the AstraZeneca jab and a separate blood vessel disorder that causes tissue inflammation and a drop in blood pressure.
But the Italian government’s top scientific adviser on the coronavirus crisis, Franco Locatelli, insisted in an interview on Sunday that fears about the Anglo-Swedish vaccine were “understandable, but unjustified.”
“I say that we are offering a safe and effective vaccine, which people must accept. That said, if we find ourselves facing an unarmed number of desertions, we will reconsider the issue, ”La Stampa said daily.
IN GRAPHICS: Who does Italy vaccinate the fastest?
Italy is one of the countries hardest hit by the pandemic, with nearly 114,000 deaths, but its vaccination campaign has been criticized for not targeting the highest risk group: the elderly.
People in their 70s are among the most neglected, with only 2.7 percent fully vaccinated compared to 4.1 percent of people in their 20s.
Overall, Italy has administered almost 13 million doses and fully vaccinated 3.9 million people, which is equivalent to about 6.5% of a total population of about 60 million.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism