Jab fears after Pfizer vaccine-linked deaths in Norway
Australia's medical regulator are seeking out more details after reports emerged from Norway regarding deaths among elderly Pfizer vaccine recipients with underlying serious health conditions.
Overseas media are reporting there have been 29 elderly people who have died after receiving the inoculation. All of those patients had existing serious underlying medical issues, but, at this stage, it is uncertain what caused the deaths.
More than 42,000 people in Norway have received the Pfizer jab so far and it is the only vaccine available in the country.
The company has indicated the small number of incidents reported in Norway were not alarming.
Pfizer is expected to be the first vaccine approved in Australia, with the Therapeutic Goods Administration previously expected to give it the green light to be imported later this month.
Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said the TGA was seeking information from both the company and the Norwegian medical regulator.
"We have been in contact with the Foreign Minister, and Marise Payne will task DFAT to seek advice directly from the Norwegian government," he said.
"As further information is available, we'll share that with the Australian public.
"At the same time, we have seen is a heartening report from the CDC, or Centers for Disease Control in the United States, which reviewed approximately 1.8 million doses of the same vaccine - the Pfizer vaccine - with very positive results in terms of both the safety and the efficacy."
In a statement to Bloomberg media, Pfizer has said "the number of incidents so far is not alarming, and in line with expectations".
Clinical evidence so far indicates that the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is 95 per cent effective at preventing COVID-19.
Australia has secured 10 million doses, which can immunise five million people, with frontline medical workers, hotel quarantine workers as well as
Originally published as Jab fears after Pfizer vaccine-linked deaths in Norway