articles | 21 April 2021

Cyprus adds single shot Janssen to arsenal

A single-shot vaccine against the novel coronavirus will be available alongside other vaccination options in the Republic of Cyprus, after the EU drug regulator okayed Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 Janssen vaccine.

Up to 2400 doses of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine, already received and stored in the Republic of Cyprus, could be made available this week after Pharmaceutical Services got the green light from the European Medicines Agency.

EMA said overall benefits of getting the single-shot made by Johnson & Johnson outweighed the risks of very rare blood clots linked to Janssen.

Cypriot official Elena Panagiotopoulou, Deputy Head of the Pharmaceutical Services, told state radio Wednesday morning that the state had ordered 200,000 does of the Janssen vaccine, while 2400 had already been delivered.

Earlier this month Cyprus suspended the availability of the J&J shot pending further investigation into fears of rare blood clots associated with the vaccine.

But EMA on Tuesday okayed the shot adding that thrombosis and a lower number of blood platelets, which may be a very rare side effect of the Janssen coronavirus vaccine, should be added in the official product information.

Janssen is the fourth vaccine to be approved by EMA but the only one that does not require a second dose.

EU health commissioner Stella Kyriakides urged member states to follow the EMA opinion, posting on Twitter on Tuesday that the news “is clear: benefits of Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine outweigh risks of very rare and unusual side effects.”

According to scientific reports, differences between vaccines range from technology to time period when they got tested.

Panagiotopoulou said people registering for a vaccine through the state’s online platform should be able to see the Janssen option this week or by Monday at the latest.

Medical experts around the world including Cypriot officials have been urging people to get whichever COVID-19 vaccine is offered to them.

Source: Knews

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