Vaccine inequality: Wealthy nations had vaccine choices after AstraZeneca and J&J confronted clot studies. Others might not have that luxurious

Vaccine inequality: Rich nations had vaccine options after AstraZeneca and J&J faced clot reports. Others may not have that luxury


This isn’t only because developed countries, like those in Western Europe, had purchased a large number of AstraZeneca doses to dig their way out of the pandemic but, more consequentially, because so much of the developing world was relying on this one vaccine to do the same.

The double blow is that a picture is emerging that the AstraZeneca vaccine — which appears to have caused a very rare, sometimes fatal, condition of severe clotting with low blood platelet counts — may be affecting younger adults more than the elderly. Developing countries, in general, have significantly younger populations than their wealthier counterparts.

A link between the rare blood clots and J&J’s vaccine has not been officially confirmed, but US officials want to pause it and use alternative shots while they work out if there is indeed a connection, and if so, how prevalent it might be. Europe is waiting to see what an investigation finds.

But much of the developing world doesn’t have that luxury. New…