AstraZeneca in court papers says Covid vaccine can have rare side effect – Times of India

LONDON: AstraZeneca has said in court documents that its Covid vaccine can cause a rare side effect, the UK’s Daily Telegraph newspaper reported.
The statement by the pharmaceutical giant comes as it is being sued for over £100 million (a little over Rs 1,000 crore) in class action over claims its vaccine caused death and serious injury in 51 cases, according to court documents seen by the Daily Telegraph.
AstraZeneca is contesting the claims but has accepted, in a legal document submitted to the high court in February, that its Covid vaccine “can, in very rare cases, cause thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome”, which causes people to have blood clots and a low blood platelet count.
In India, the vaccine was sold under the brand name Covishield manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII) in Pune. When contacted, SII declined comment.
One of the claimants is Jamie Scott, a father of two, who was left with a permanent brain injury after developing a blood clot and a bleed on the brain that prevented him from working after he received the AstraZeneca vaccine in April 2021.
The product information relating to the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine was updated in April 2021, with the approval of the UK regulator MHRA, to include the possibility that the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine is capable, in very rare cases, of being a trigger for thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS).AstraZeneca points out this update was well documented and publicly available, the UK newspaper reported.
The vaccine, developed with Oxford University, is no longer used in UK.
Lawyers representing families suing the drugs company argue that the vaccine was not as safe as individuals were entitled to expect. They are suing the firm under the Consumer Protection Act of 1987, arguing the maximum £12,000 (more than Rs 12 lakh) payout they could get from the UK-govt-run vaccine compensation scheme is inadequate.
Figures obtained by the Daily Telegraph under a Freedom of Information request show that out of 163 payouts made by the UK govt scheme by Feb this year, at least 158 went to those who had taken the AstraZeneca jab.
An AstraZeneca spokesperson told TOI: “From the body of evidence in clinical trials and real-world data, the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine has continuously been shown to have an acceptable safety profile and regulators around the world consistently state that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks of extremely rare potential side effects.”

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