Brussels, April 6: There is link between COVID-19 vaccine, developed by Oxford University and pharma giant AstraZeneca, and blood clots, said a top official of the European Medicines Agency on Tuesday. A number of countries in Europe have temporarily suspended the use of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine following alleged reports of suspected deaths from blood clots after vaccinations. Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine Suspension: European Countries' Decision More Political Than Scientific? Report Says Pfizer Vaccine Has More Blood Clot Cases.

"In my opinion, we can say it now, it is clear there is a link with the vaccine. But we still do not know what causes this reaction," EMA head of vaccines Marco Cavaleri told Italy's Il Messaggero newspaper. "We are trying to get a precise picture of what is happening, to define in detail this syndrome due to the vaccine," Cavaleri added. The European Medicines Agency, an EU regulator, had earlier said that Oxford-AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine was safe. It had approved the use of the vaccine in the European Union (EU) on January 29. WHO Reports No Link Between AstraZeneca Vaccine and Blood Clots.

When the reports of blood clots in vaccinated people promoted European countries to suspend the use of Oxford-AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine, the EMA had called on the member states of European Union (EU) to continue using the vaccine because "its benefits outweighed its risks".

Last month, the World Health Organisation also underlined that the EMA had declared AstraZeneca's vaccine safe, adding that the UN health agency "systematically reviews safety signals, and is carefully assessing the current reports on the AstraZeneca vaccine".

"It is important to note that the European Medicines Agency has said there is no indication of a link between the vaccine and blood clots, and that the vaccine can continue to be used while its investigation is ongoing,"Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO, said. "As soon as WHO has gained a full understanding of these events, the findings and any changes to our current recommendations will be communicated immediately to the public," Tedros added.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 06, 2021 03:51 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website