Finland on Friday suspended the use of COVID-19 vaccines developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University after two cases of blood clots were reported in people after receiving the jab.

“According to the Finnish Medicines Agency (Fimea), two cerebral venous thrombosis have been reported in Finland 4-10 days after receiving the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine,” said a statement by the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL).

As a precaution, THL suspended the vaccination with AstraZeneca jabs until further information is available and the existence of a possible causal relationship can be assessed, noted the statement.

The decision will take effect immediately and the situation will be assessed next week, it added.

THL will release the results of its investigation as soon as it is available, and vaccination will continue no earlier than March 29.

Vaccination with other COVID-19 vaccines in the country will continue.

Sweden, Norway, and Denmark will also maintain their suspension of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine as they review the European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) conclusion that the jab is safe and effective.

The three Nordic countries will continue to review the judgment EMA released on Thursday that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh its rare risks.

The EMA on Thursday asserted that the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine against COVID-19 was safe.

“This is a safe and effective vaccine, its benefits in protecting people from COVID-19 with the associated risks of death and hospitalization outweigh the possible risks,” said Emer Cooke, the EMA executive director.

“When you vaccinate millions of people, it is inevitable that rare incidents happen,” she told a news conference.

But the EMA head warned that a link between the reported cases and vaccine could not be ruled out definitively, so the agency would carry out further investigations and recommend raising awareness of possible risks.

Meanwhile, Italy, France, Germany, and Spain on Thursday said they would resume administering the AstraZeneca jab after the EMA’s decision.

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