The first country in Europe to abandon AstraZeneca's vaccine against Covid-19 in April, Denmark announced on Monday that it would also drop Johnson & Johnson's vaccine because of possible serious side effects, despite the green lights from the European regulator and WHO to use it.
Read also: Europe's green light for Johnson & Johnson vaccine
The Danish National Health Authority has concluded that the benefits of using Johnson & Johnson's Covid-19 vaccine do not outweigh the risk of causing a possible side effect, VITT (a very rare type thrombosis linked to the injection of the serum), in people who receive the vaccine,
”she said in a statement. Therefore, Denmark "will
continue the Danish Covid-19 mass vaccination program without the Johnson & Johnson vaccine
," she announces.
Denmark, which appears with this decision among the first to renounce it in the world, had never authorized the vaccine, marketed in Europe by Janssen, a subsidiary of J&J.
His job or not had been evaluated since mid-April.
This decision will slow down by four weeks the current immunization campaign in the Nordic country, where the epidemic is considered "
" and where the majority of people at risk and healthcare workers have been vaccinated.
Anyone over 16 who wants it should now be able to be vaccinated at the end of August.
According to the latest tally, 11.5% of the 5.8 million Danes are fully vaccinated and 23.4% have received a first injection.
Currently four vaccines are authorized in the EU: Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson - the latter two under certain age conditions in most European countries.
It should also be borne in mind that in the future we will first and foremost vaccinate younger and healthy people,
" said Deputy Director General of the Danish Health Authority, Helene Probst, quoted in the report. communicated.
Read also: Covid-19: Denmark, the first country in Europe to definitively give up the AstraZeneca vaccine
In April, the US regulator temporarily suspended the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine after rare cases of thrombosis. In Europe, the EMA estimated that it benefited from a favorable benefit / risk ratio despite a "
of blood clots.
Denmark has ordered 8.2 million doses of the vaccine, the first of which were received in mid-April. He has not yet indicated what will happen to the doses received but discussions are underway in the Scandinavian kingdom to authorize injections of this vaccine and that of AstraZeneca to those who wish. The health authorities have not ruled out reintroducing Johnson & Johnson's vaccine, or that of AstraZeneca, into its immunization program in the future. "
New knowledge may appear, or the situation in Denmark may change, for example in terms of epidemiological pressure (...) or the availability of other vaccines,
" the authority said.