Estonia to discuss AstraZeneca vaccine age restriction in March

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AstraZeneca lab. Source: AstraZeneca

The age limit placed on the AstraZeneca vaccine will be discussed in the near future, Minister for Health and Labor Tanel Kiik (Center) said, after several EU countries increased or scrapped their limits.

An age limit of 70 was initially placed on the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine in Estonia but this week France and Germany removed their caps, ETV's "Aktuaalne kaamera" reported on Thursday evening.

The topic has not been discussed in Estonia yet, Kiik said, but added discussions will be held on this subject in March: "This is a question for health experts, ie members of the expert committee - immunologists, doctors - to decide whether, based on current research, the upper limit should be abolished. This debate will definitely be held."

Krista Ressi, head of the Center of Allergology and Immunology at East Tallinn Central Hospital and member of the expert committee, said: "If the research results support that this limit can be raised, we will do so. This decision will be made when we get more data."

Family doctor Le Vallikivi believes it is reasonable to lift the age limit because there are no other vaccines available at the moment.

Experts have said all the vaccines currently in use reduce the need for hospitalization.

It was reported earlier this week that a 31-year-old Estonian man died 10 days after receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine but it is not yet known if the vaccine was related to the man's death. An investigation is ongoing, Estonia's Agency of Medicines has said.

On Friday morning, President Kersti Kaljulaid, 51, was vaccinated with the AstraZeneca vaccine.

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Editor: Helen Wright

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