Friday 29 September 2023

Costa Rica approves use of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine

The AstraZeneca vaccine schedule is for two doses to be given 12 weeks apart; The Johnson & Johnson vaccine has a great advantage: your immunization is completed with a single dose.

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29 September 2023 - At The Banks - Source: BCCR

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QCOSTARICA – The National Vaccination and Epidemiology Commission (CNVE) on Thursday approved the use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. This will be applied to the population over 18 years of age, with no age or gender limit, depending on the progress of the different groups.

Pregnant and breastfeeding women are excepted.

The AstraZeneca vaccine schedule is for two doses to be given 12 weeks apart.

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The Pfizer vaccine will continue to be used in group 2, since the time between doses is shorter, which implies an acceleration in the goal of achieving immunity in this most vulnerable population.

The Commission also agreed that the person will always be informed of the marker of the vaccine they will receive, however, it will not be possible to select which vaccines will be applied, given the limited availability.

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) determined that the association of the AstraZeneca vaccine with the appearance of blood clots is extremely rare (6.5 cases per million people vaccinated), even less frequent than that which occurs with ingestion of combined oral contraceptives (9 to 12 cases per 10,000 women).

The Commission’s experts are keeping an eye on all the new scientific evidence that is issued on the different developments of vaccines against COVID-19.

Costa Rica to negotiate for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine

The CNVE said on Thursday that it will negotiate the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.

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“The Johnson & Johnson vaccine received its approval status from a strict regulatory authority, which is one of the conditions to bring the highest possible degree of safety and efficacy to the population,” explained the Minister of Health, Daniel Salas.

The Johnson & Johnson vaccine has one great advantage: immunization is completed with a single dose. It is recommended for people who are 18 years or older.

If the purchase were to take place, this would be the third pharmaceutical company. So far, vaccines have been purchased from Pfizer and AstraZeneca.


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Salas also referred to Moderna’s vaccine, one of those used in the United States.

This vaccine had been a finalist last year. However, when authorities made contact with the company, it indicated that they could only deliver in the second half of 2021, so the option was discarded at that time.

“They told us, last year, we cannot deliver it until the second semester and, given these conditions, we decided to leave it out, and also because it cost three times more than Pfizer. It is the most expensive,” said Salas.



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