Vandenbroucke: “AstraZeneca for the elderly can be a game changer …



On Wednesday, the vaccination campaign may change course, in the hope that it can finally reach cruising speed. Minister Vandenbroucke has had enough of the ‘operational kweddels’ with the AstraZeneca vaccine. If the Superior Health Council approves the vaccine for the elderly, he thinks it is a ‘game changer’.

Marjan Justaert

Minister Frank Vandenbroucke (sp.a) acknowledged this morning in The Seventh Day on VRT that he is very bored with the ‘operational kweddels’, which means that producer AstraZeneca in particular does not deliver the promised quantities (on time). “Do I feel responsible? Absolutely.”

The minister calls this ‘overpromising’ the biggest problem today. He has asked the Superior Health Council (SHC) whether the second dose of Pfizer can be administered after 42 instead of 21 days, whether one injection is sufficient, and whether the AstraZeneca vaccine can also be used for people 55 or 65 years old. to become.

READ ALSO: Answered: the 3 questions from Vandenbroucke to speed up vaccination campaign

Our country is currently using three vaccines to vaccinate people against the corona virus. One of these is that of AstraZeneca. Problem: that vaccine should not be administered to people over 55 in our country. The Superior Health Council, as in a number of other European countries, recommended that the vaccine should only be used for people between 18 and 54 years old, because there is still insufficient data available for the elderly.


If the answer to that last question is ‘yes’, it could be a real game changer, according to Vandenbroucke. He speaks of a ‘reset’ of the vaccination campaign. Then the strategic choices can and must be reviewed – of course on the basis of medical advice – in such a way that the vaccination campaign can be ‘simpler and more flexible’. And: faster. On Wednesday, the minister, together with the other competent Excellencies, wants to make decisions.

Whether that also leads to relaxation of the consultation committee next Friday, remains to be seen. The government’s relaxation strategy is inextricably linked to the vaccination campaign.

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