There is a new bump within the highway to mass vaccination in opposition to COVID-19 in Canada.
Ontario, Alberta and Saskatchewan introduced on Tuesday that they are going to now not administer first doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine. Causes cited for this abrupt shift embody claims of unsure provide and worries in regards to the uncommon threat of blood clots from the vaccine.
Nonetheless, authorities in different provinces have stated that they don’t plan to pause AstraZeneca inoculations, and federal well being officers say they nonetheless take into account the vaccine secure to make use of in most populations.
To assist Canadians perceive what the science says in regards to the AstraZeneca vaccine, CTV’s Chief Information Anchor and Senior Editor Lisa LaFlamme spoke with Dr. Menaka Pai of McMaster College in Hamilton, Ont. Pai is an affiliate professor of hematology and thromboembolism – a blood clot skilled, in different phrases – and a member of Ontario’s COVID-19 Science Advisory Desk.
Under is a transcript of the interview, edited for size and readability.
Lisa LaFlamme: Physician, you’re on the Ontario Science Advisory Desk, so your job is to have a look at the science. What triggered this sudden announcement in the present day?
Dr. Menaka Pai: Properly, it was the the science, Lisa. It is altering very quick, and the realities of the pandemic are altering in lots of components of the nation as nicely, and I believe that this was a considerate resolution based mostly on evolving science.
LaFlamme: OK, so why was AstraZeneca so successful within the UK, and seemingly riddled with issues on this nation?
Pai: I believe AstraZeneca stays a really efficient vaccination in opposition to COVID-19. It reduces dying and hospitalization and severe sickness, and that is what we’re seeing within the U.Ok. Right here in Canada, issues are somewhat bit completely different. We’re actually extra conscious of the opposed occasions, we’re on the lookout for them, and we benefit from having entry within the final couple of weeks to much more vaccine selections.
LaFlamme: In order that’s a alternative, then — we’ve got the luxurious of placing it on pause, for the primary dose. However what in regards to the second dose? Anybody who acquired the AstraZeneca feels a bit like a guinea pig proper now, or possibly even a yo-yo. With so many ranging opinions, what ought to somebody do for his or her second dose?
Pai: First I need to empathize with that feeling. A lot of individuals I like have gotten a primary dose and are anxious. For the second dose, we’re ready on extra science, so we’re hoping that there is a examine popping out of the U.Ok. that may present that mixing and matching doses is secure and efficient. We additionally imagine that the danger of those clots is likely to be barely decrease with the second dose, and as that science is available in, we will be that to make good suggestions to assist Canadians, to reassure them.
LaFlamme: We’re all hanging on each phrase, physician. We thanks a lot to your perception tonight.
Pai: Thanks, Lisa.