Responding to the scientific briefing on the AstraZeneca vaccine, Ruth Rankine, director of the NHS Confederation’s PCN Network, said: “The key message to take away from both the EU and the UK regulators is that the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine still outweigh any potential risks and we hope the public will be reassured that a thorough review has been undertaken and the necessary precautions taken.
“Our members have not reported a significant impact on numbers turning up for their vaccination, and we hope that by clarifying the recommendations and their basis, today’s announcement will be helpful in boosting people’s vaccine confidence. As Prof Van Tam pointed out, vaccination is one of our strongest tools in the fight against COVID-19, and it is vital that the programme continues at pace. We will therefore need ongoing clarity on supplies, whoever the manufacturer.
“It will be for the Government, along with the regulators, to continue to move with the evidence and communicate this clearly. We now await the additional information that will be shared with healthcare professionals and with the public.”