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Slovakia suspends AstraZeneca vaccine after death

Christian Fernsby |
Slovakia suspended administering the first dose of AstraZeneca on Tuesday as a preventative health measure following theunexplained death of a 47-year-old woman, announced the Ministry of Health.

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Vaccination will be completed in patients who have already received the first dose of this vaccine.

The patient who died suffered from a blood clotting disorder but was unaware that she had a genetic predisposition.

"According to the first information, the patient suffered from a genetic disorder that was not detectable before vaccination," said Slovak Health Minister Vladimír Lengvarský.

"Due to the genetic predisposition, the connection between vaccination and subsequent thrombosis was determined to be probable," added Magdaléna Jurkemíková, a spokeswoman for the State Institute for Drug Control (ŠÚKL).

The vaccine will now only be administered to people who have already received the first dose and need to complete the vaccination process.

"The Ministry is currently considering several alternatives of how to proceed in this matter in Slovakia. We are gathering expert opinions, and based on them, we will inform about the next steps during this week," said Zuzana Eliášová, a spokeswoman for the Slovak Ministry of Health.

In Slovakia, the AstraZeneca vaccine is now intended for the age group 18 to 44, but before this rule was introduced, older people received this vaccine as well. People from the age of 45 are now vaccinated with Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines.

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