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bólusetning mass vaccination Laugardalshöll
Photo: Golli. Mass vaccination against COVID-19 at Laugardalshöll in Reykjavík.

Hope to Vaccinate Everyone by June 25

In an interview with Morgunblaðið today, Minister of Health Svandís Svavarsdóttir confirmed that the government hopes to have offered everyone their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by June 25. Those who had previously declined will be invited again in August.

Nearly 130,000 fully vaccinated

Following a busy week of vaccinations, Minister of Health Svandís Svavarsdóttir stated that the authorities hope to have offered everyone the first dose of the vaccine by June 25.

“Hopefully, everyone will be happy,” she stated in an interview with Mbl.is. Svandís added that vaccinations have gone well so far but that the authorities have yet to inoculate much of the youngest section of the population.

A total of 128,645 individuals have been fully vaccinated in Iceland and a further 86,326 have received their first doses. Those individuals who have previously declined vaccinations, or have been unable to attend, will be offered additional doses in August.

Causal relation “unlikely”

On May 18, after five deaths and five serious side effects were reported to the Icelandic Medicines Agency, two independent specialists in internal medicine were hired to examine the causal relationship between these cases and the administering of vaccines. Their investigation involved all of the vaccines that have been used in Iceland: Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Moderna, and Janssen.

The Icelandic Medicines Agency published the specialists’ findings today, noting the following:

  1. The specialists found it “unlikely” that four of the five deaths under review could be traced to vaccinations. The association between one of the deaths and vaccines is described as “unlikely to possible.”
  2. The specialists found it “unlikely to possible” that three of the five reported instances of serious side effects could be traced to vaccinations. A “possible” connection exists between vaccination and illness in one case. A “likely” connection exists between vaccination and illness, according to the investigators.
  3. In almost all of the cases they reviewed, the specialists concluded that there was a clear association between death and illness and underlying risk factors.

24,000 doses of the Janssen vaccine

At a press conference this morning, Lena Hallengren, Sweden’s Minister of Health and Social Affairs, stated that Iceland had received 24,000 doses of Janssen on loan from Sweden. According to RÚV, most of the doses have arrived in Iceland, with 10,000 doses already having been administered.

Iceland has borrowed a total of 40,000 vaccine doses from Norway and Sweden, with Norway having lent Iceland 16,000 AstraZeneca doses.

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