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Rare blood clots are discovered in seven more Australians who’ve had the AstraZeneca Covid jab as the government ramps up their vaccine rollout
- Two men and two women are confirmed to have the rare blood clotting disorder
- A further three women are believed to have the condition after getting the jab
- On Tuesday, a woman from South Australia died as a result of blood clots
Up to seven more Australians have been diagnosed with rare blood clots after getting the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine – as the government ramps up its vaccination rollout amid the fresh outbreaks.
The Therapeutic Goods Administration confirmed on Thursday that two men, aged 67 and 71, from NSW and Western Australia have the blood clotting disorder.
Two women, age 67 and 70, from Victoria are also confirmed cases.
A further three women have been deemed ‘probable’ cases, including a 48-year-old from Victoria, a 61-year-old from Western Australia, and a 66-year-old from the ACT.
One patient is in a critical condition in intensive care.
Up to seven more Australians have been diagnosed with rare blood clots after getting the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine
The condition, known technically as thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome, is ‘very rare’, according to the TGA, with the rates in Australia consistent with other countries.
Of the 5.4 million doses of the vaccine given to Australians, there have been 51 confirmed cases and 32 probable cases – with a total of 83 cases overall.
On Tuesday it was confirmed that a 72-year-old woman from South Australia died almost three weeks after receiving her AstraZeneca jab.
Health officials said on Monday the South Australian woman’s death is ‘likely’ linked to her consumption of the vaccine.
She is the fourth person to die of complications relating to the shot, and is believed to have developed thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome some time between having the jab on June 24 and becoming unwell 11 days later on July 5.
Sydneysiders are seen queuing up at Sydney Olympic Park to receive their Covid vaccinations
Current statistics suggest just one in 65,000 people will develop a clot – while the death rate is sitting at the one in every two million mark.
A TGA spokesman said on Tuesday that 21 patients aged between 70 and 79 had developed ‘serious blood clots with a low blood platelet count’.
Clotting is triggered by the immune system’s response to the vaccine and is not associated with other clotting conditions.
Seven of those patients have developed clots in an unusual location, like the brain or abdomen.
The AstraZeneca vaccine was initially restricted to patients over 60, but that age was dropped to 50 in an attempt to boost vaccination rates
The AstraZeneca vaccine was initially restricted to patients over 60, but that age was dropped to 50 in an attempt to boost vaccination rates.
More recently, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has opened the floodgates to allow any adult to receive the vaccine – so long as they sign an indemnity waiver and seek medical advice from their healthcare professionals.
Mr Morrison earlier on Thursday blamed Australia’s expert medical advisors for the country’s troubled vaccine rollout.
He also argued he did not want to rush approval of vaccines while case numbers were low.
Many Australians have been fed up with the slow rollout with just over 11 per cent of the population fully vaccinated.
‘We have had a cautious approach in Australia on medical advice,’ the prime minister told ABC radio on Thursday.
‘We wanted to follow all the usual steps and processes to ensure the vaccines were appropriately qualified before they were used in the community.’
Mr Morrison said the initial plan was to rely on AstraZeneca vaccines that could be manufactured in Australia.
Many older Australians are choosing to wait for an alternative to AstraZeneca before getting their Covid vaccine.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics has surveyed people in different age groups on their reasons for not getting a jab.
A third of people aged between 50 and 69 and one in four respondents aged over 70 said they were waiting for a different shot.
Queues of people waiting to get their Covid vaccines are seen in Sydney