The president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, appeared on Wednesday after the suspension of the distribution of Janssen vaccines due to cases of thrombi in the United States. In a no-questions-asked appearance announced just minutes before it happened, he read a statement in which he redoubled the EU’s commitment to Pfizer / Biontech in the face of the problems with Janssen and AstraZeneca.
This Tuesday Janssen has paralyzed its distribution, and with it the arrival of 55 million doses to the EU, essential for Europe to have 70% of its population immunized in summer. It does so while the United States reviews six cases of thrombi among its 6.8 million administered doses, looking for if there really is a link, why it is due and how the ailment should be treated. The EU expected 360 million vaccines by the second quarter of 2021: Pfizer, 200 million; Janssen, 55 million; AstraZeneca, 70 million (instead of the 180 agreed); and Moderna, 35 million.
In this context, the EMA has indicated this Tuesday that “last week a review of a ‘safety signal’ began to evaluate cases of embolisms and thrombi, resulting in obstruction of blood vessels, in people who had been vaccinated with Janssen” . For this evaluation, “the EMA safety committee (PRAC) is investigating all detected cases and will decide if any regulatory action is necessary.” “It is not clear at this time if there is a causal association between Janssen vaccination and these cases,” the EMA said. They are “in contact with the FDA and other international regulators on this matter and will communicate the results of their evaluation when it is complete.”