WARSAW, Poland — The number of people in Poland who do not turn up to receive a COVID-19 vaccine made by AstraZeneca ranges from over a dozen to a few dozen percent at some immunization centers, officials said Thursday.
The government official in charge of the vaccination program, Michal Dworczyk, did not give exact figures but said fewer people are currently registering for vaccination as a result of questions being raised in the media about the safety of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
He said abstaining from registered vaccination in Poland was “not a mass phenomenon.” Poland also is administering the vaccines made by Pfizer and Moderna.
Dworczyk insisted that the vaccine is safe and effectively protects against severe COVID-19. He said unopened, unused doses were not being wasted because they can be stored for six months.
Dworczyk said there was a certain ”panic in the European Union that is not based on any research or scientific recommendations but based on political decisions.”
The head of Poland’s Office for Registration of Medicinal Products, Grzegorz Cessak said the country has registered five cases of blood clots among people who received the AstraZeneca vaccine, including one death.
A nation of 38 million, Poland has ordered some 100 million COVID-19 vaccines from various makers, including some 16 million from AstraZeneca.