One of the government’s top science boffins, Professor Jonathan Van-Tam, has blasted European vaccine waste at a coronavirus press briefing, saying: “Vaccines don’t save lives if they’re in fridges, they only save lives if they’re in arms.”
He also delivered some remarks on vaccine safety, batting away fake news about links between the British coronavirus jab and blood clotting. He cited a statement from the EMA – Europe’s medicines regulator – which clearly denied the link, and emphasised that it was the official position of the European regulator.
Speaking about behind-the-scenes data crunching from British medical brainiacs, he said: “There’s a lot of evidence emerging now that is reassuring that there is no overall excess signal or increased risk. And I expect, without prejudice to their absolute findings, those to be the final conclusions of the EMA and the MHRA in due course.”
Regardless of the EMA’s position, the use of the vaccine has been suspended in a number of major European countries. The decision – seen by some as politically motivated – has been attacked by astute politicians within their own nations.
Top German SDP politician Karl Lauterbach attacked Angela Merkel’s administration for her decision to block use of the jab, saying: “The suspension of vaccinations with AstraZeneca is a clear mistake. The complication rate with the vaccine is on the order of less than one in 100,000.”
Professor Van-Tam’s comments follow similarly critical comments about the “not immunologically plausible” claims of Emmanuel Macron that Britain’s brilliant Oxford/AstraZeneca wonder drug was virtually ineffective in older patients.
“Our technical advisory committee, the JCVI, took a view which I share that it was not immunologically plausible that the vaccine would work in the age range of 18 to 55 years of age, which is where a lot of the data ran out, and then not work in those older age groups” he said at the time.