PRAGUE (Reuters) – The Czech health ministry recommended on Wednesday that only people over 60 years old should receive COVID-19 vaccines from AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson due to a potential risk of blood clots.
Scientists and U.S. and European drug regulators have been searching for an explanation for what is causing rare but potentially deadly clots accompanied by low blood platelet counts, which have led some countries to halt or limit use of the AstraZeneca and J&J vaccines.
The Czech health ministry said it made the decision after responding to recommendations from the country’s drug regulator SUKL and the Czech Vaccination Society.
U.S., EU and other regulators have said the benefits of receiving the AstraZeneca or J&J shots outweigh any risks.
Vaccinations in the country of 10.7 million have accelerated in recent weeks with Pfizer’s two-dose jab making up the majority of supply in the central European nation.
(Reporting by Michael Kahn; Editing by Gareth Jones)