AstraZeneca to deliver 200,000 fewer coronavirus doses to Belgium in March
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AstraZeneca to deliver 200,000 fewer coronavirus doses to Belgium in March

Credit: Belga

Pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca will deliver 200,000 fewer coronavirus vaccines to Belgium than promised next month, Federal Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke said on Thursday.

Vandenbroucke emphasised that the vaccine itself is good, but that the production is not what was promised, referring to previous delayed and decreased deliveries.

“But right now, we are getting 200,000 fewer doses than promised for March, a reduction from 700,000 to 500,000,” he said on Flemish public broadcaster VRT’s Het Journaal.

He stressed that this is “a very annoying situation” for countries that have a plan to implement for the vaccination rollout, as they will have to make constant adjustments based on the varying quantities of doses received.

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The vaccine developer had initially promised the European Union it would deliver 90 million vaccines in the first quarter of this year, which was subsequently more than halved to 40 million. However, so far, the continent has received just over 8 million.

Although the approval of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine by the European Medicine Agency (EMA) will help reduce the impact of decreased deliveries, this company too already indicated that the promised 55 million vaccines for the EU might not be reached before the summer.

Lauren Walker
The Brussels Times