AstraZeneca vaccine valid for people over 65, says WHO

The World Health Organization said the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine can be administered to people over 65, as well as in settings where variants of the virus are circulating.

The WHO Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization, in its recommendations on this vaccine, said: “Taking the totality of available evidence into account, WHO recommends the vaccine for use in persons aged 65 years and older,” adding it also recommends its use “even if variants are present in a country.”

The recommendations come after global alarm following a recent study suggesting the AstraZeneca jab was far less effective against a virus variant first detected in South Africa.

It also follows advice from several governments across Europe against using the vaccine on over-65s, due to what they cited as insufficient data on testing in more elderly people. This came despite EU regulator the European Medicines Agency approving it for use in all age groups above 18.

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