Macron: AstraZeneca’s Covid vaccine seems to be ‘quasi-ineffective’ for over 65s

Macron: AstraZeneca's Covid vaccine seems to be 'quasi-ineffective' for over 65s
Photo: AFP
French President Emmanuel Macron said on Friday that AstraZeneca's coronavirus vaccine appeared not to be effective for people over 65 years of age.

Speaking to reporters only hours before the European Medecines Agency (EMA) recommended the vaccine for adults of all ages, Macron said there was “very little information” available for the vaccine developed by the British-Swedish company and Oxford University.

“Today we think that it is quasi-ineffective for people over 65,” he told the reporters, his office confirmed to AFP.

“What I can tell you officially today is that the early results we have are not encouraging for 60 to 65-year-old people concerning AstraZeneca,” he said.

Macron said he was awaiting the EMA's verdict – which came later Friday – and also that of France's own health authority “because they have the numbers”.

The French expert decision on the vaccine is expected at the start of next week, according to sources close to the health authority.

“I don't have any data, and I don't have a scientific team of my own to look at the numbers,” Macron acknowledged.

Meanwhile, Germany's vaccine commission on Friday maintained its advice against using AstraZeneca's coronavirus vaccines on older people.   

“The reason is because there is currently insufficient data on the effectiveness of the vaccines on people above 65 years old,” said the commission known as STIKO.

The advice by the panel of medical experts will be taken into account by the government as it officially draws up its decree on usage of the vaccine.

The discussion about the right target age group for the vaccine has compounded controversy surrounding AstraZeneca's vaccine.

The European Commission Friday published a redacted version of its contract with the drugs giant, hoping to prove the company had breached a commitment on vaccine deliveries.

Brussels is furious with the pharmaceuticals company after it warned that it would only be able to deliver a fraction of the doses the EU had been expecting once the vaccine is approved for use in the bloc.


Member comments

  1. AstraZeneca, Pfizer-BioNTech, or Moderna, I give my turn to someone else. I won’ have any. No sufficient proof that it works or how long we will be covered, etc. Have been seriously ill after two vaccinations in the past, I am not risking it. I have been a good girl since before the first lockdown in March 2020, respecting social distancing, washing my hands more often than usual, wearing a face-mask during and after lockdowns, carrying wipes, and disinfectant in my bag. And to top it all, Christmas 2019 was the last time I saw my daughter and grandchildren living in another Euroean country, non EU if you see what I mean. There is a German saying: Patience brings roses.

  2. Don’t worry. Given the EU and Macron’s attacks on the vaccine manufacturers, you won’t be able to get the vaccine anyway.

  3. As the president says he doesnt have any information, numbers nor the people to advise. Never mind his comments I would just about accept any vaccine rather than have this continuous broken promise litany.

  4. The Astra Zenecka vaccine is fine for all age groups, we are told in the UK. I am honestly fine about having it. This vaccine is non-profit making so cheap for all customers. So let’s have more appreciation and less panic and complaining .

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