Health minister confirms AstraZeneca vaccinations to continue pending EMA decision


Health Minister Vassilis Kikilias on Tuesday confirmed that Greece will continue administering the AstraZeneca vaccine against Covid-19, pending an investigation by the European Medicines Agency into reports of serious side-effects, including clotting, that have prompted several European countries to pull the jab.

“Since the start of the vaccination process, we have put our trust in one institution, the EMA, which is responsible for authorizations, and we follow its guidelines faithfully,” Kikilias told Skai TV on Tuesday morning.

The health minister said that 172,000 doses of the jab developed by the UK’s Oxford University have already been administered in Greece, with just one report of complications that, upon further examination, were found to be unrelated to the vaccine.

“We will continue being vaccinated with all the vaccines approved in Europe until the EMA tells us otherwise,” Kikilias said.

Greece’s National Organization for Medicines (EOF), meanwhile, is due to hold an emergency meeting on the issue on Tuesday, while the EMA has scheduled a meeting on Thursday to discuss concerns expressed by health authorities in countries such as Germany, France and The Netherlands about the specific vaccine.