Yes to the mix of vaccines for the under 60 who have received the first dose AstraZeneca. The Italian Medicines Agency (Aifa) approves in the evening the mixed vaccination for those under 60 who have received a first dose of AstraZeneca, but the Regions continue to go in no particular order. Who adapts to the indications and who continues to say no to vaccine mix; who suspends the recalls with mRna drugs instead of Astrazeneca until they have guarantees on further supplies and who leaves the possibility to choose whether or not to have the second dose with the Anglo-Swedish drug even if you are under 60 years old.
In short, the territories continue to have no common line even after the ordinance of the Ministry of Health which gave peremptory indications – reaffirmed even today by the minister Roberto Speranza – on the use of Astrazeneca and open a new front: with the now marginal viral vector vaccines, more doses of Pfizer e Modern so as not to slow down the campaign and achieve herd immunity in September.
The result is chaos, which adds to the confusion and loss of confidence on the part of citizens caused by the openness to the vaccine mix – on which the positions of the experts are anything but granitic – and by the umpteenth change of route, the fourth since the beginning of the year, on Astrazeneca imposed by experts in the light of new scientific evidence and the improvement of the epidemiological situation. A confusion confirmed in the note with which the EMA, speaking of “disinformation” and reiterating that the Astrazeneca vaccine “remains authorized for the entire population”, tries to patch up an interview, then denied, of the head of the task force on vaccines from the same Agency, Marco Cavaleri.
Also for this reason the government reiterates that the line does not change and, indeed, the premier is thinking of a further message of clarity and reassurance to give to the Italians. Among the hypotheses, that of an ad hoc event to clarify some points and prevent the campaign from slowing down. «Our indications – says Speranza – are peremptory and must be followed. It is not a political debate, it is not a prime minister, a minister or a regional president who decides: the international scientific community has given indications on Astrazeneca that have changed on the basis of scientific evidence and we must follow them “.
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With an opinion published in the evening, a definitive word on the vaccine mix comes, as mentioned, by Aifa, which approves the mixed vaccination for the under 60s who have received a first dose of vaxzevria, the serum of AstraZeneca. “On the base of clinical studies published in recent weeks, the Aifa Technical Scientific Commission – it reads – has decided, in the face of a significant enhancement of the antibody response and a good reactogenicity profile, to approve the vaccine mix (first dose with Vaxzevria and second dose with Comirnaty or, by analogy, with the Moderna vaccine) ». The implementation resolution is currently being published in the Official Journal.
At the moment, however, the Regions still do not have a common line. In the next few days the Health Commission will meet and on Thursday there will be the Conference of the Regions: the topic is not on the agenda but it is not excluded that we will talk about it in order to reach a unique position. For now, therefore, everyone goes their own way. Vincenzo De Luca he announced that he had sent a “technical note” to Speranza containing doubts about heterologous vaccination, reiterating the no of his region: the vaccine mix, he says, “has not had an extensive experimentation internationally”. Also there Puglia it goes on its own. The region, says Michele Emiliano, will follow the indications of the government and however, “anyone wishing to take the second dose with Astrazeneca will have this possibility, it being understood that the act of vaccination is the act of the individual doctor who will evaluate case by case”.
The Lombardy instead he has been beating around the bush for 3 days. First he said no to the mix only to back off, but the calls haven’t started yet. President Attilio Fontana explains why: more doses of Pfizer and Moderna are needed. “As soon as we know what the government answers, both on the supply of any additional doses and on the confirmation of the modalities, we will be able to set a date”.
And more doses of the two mRna drugs are also being asked by those regions that have announced they will comply with government guidelines:Emilia Romagna, which has to call 40 thousand people and for this “more supplies are needed”, and the Lazio, which does not say this explicitly but reports the recall of Pfizer and Moderna from 35 to 21 days. And what about the others? There Liguria it is adequate, even if the governor Giovanni Toti does not miss the opportunity to reiterate that even when Astrazeneca was used under the age of 60, the instructions of the CTS were followed. And they lined up there Tuscany, the Piedmont – where the good news is that in an hour all the bookings for the open days reserved for young people from Friday to Sunday were sold out, a sign that the desire for normality among the twenty-year-olds prevails over fears – the Veneto. Dice Luca Zaia: “We will strictly apply what is prescribed”. But the governor goes further and already identifies what the new autumn front will be, the third dose: the green pass lasts 9 months and, considering that the first calls were made on January 19, they will expire in mid-October. What will be done then ?. “If it is not a third dose it will be a new vaccine – he says – but I think it is unthinkable that there will not be a new booster, then maybe I’ll be wrong”.