The pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca is struggling with production problems. As a result, 60 percent fewer vaccines than expected will be delivered to the EU in the first quarter. The company reports this to the European Commission.
The corona vaccine from the British-Swedish pharmaceutical group AstraZeneca in collaboration with the University of Oxford has not yet been officially approved by the European authorities, but approval should not be long in coming. The pharmaceutical watchdog EMA wants to make a decision about this on Friday.
However, the company now says that its promised number of 80 million vaccines will not be met in the first quarter. Delivery is limited to 31 million injections. That is 61 percent less. AstraZeneca could not say on Friday whether enough doses can be delivered in the second quarter.
The difficulties would come from production problems at AstraZeneca’s European manufacturing site. It cannot produce as many vaccines as originally planned, but the group continues to increase production.
The announcement is bad news for Belgium. Our country was entitled to 7.5 million doses in total, but this will now start more slowly. The so-called Oxford vaccine is the cheapest vaccine at 1.78 euros per dose.
It is already the second vaccine setback for our country in a short time. A week ago, Pfizer announced that it will temporarily supply fewer vaccines for the same reason. How long that break will last and how much less will be delivered is not clear.
That is why the Flemish government decided to postpone the vaccinations of hospital staff. A measure that can count on a lot of criticism, especially since there are still a lot of unused vaccines in the freezer.