SPAIN will raise the upper age limit for AstraZeneca’s COVID vaccine to include those up to 65 years-old the Health Minister confirmed on Monday.

Health Minister Carolina Darias announced that from Wednesday, when Spain resumes administering the shots the age range will be extended from 18-55 years old to 18-65 year olds.

Spain was among several countries in Europe that had taken the decision last week to suspend the use of the Oxford vaccine while reports of side-effects including fatal blood clots were investigated.

But it announced on Friday that the AstraZeneca jabs would resume from Wednesday after the EU’s drug regulator concluded that it was “safe and effective”.

Darias also said that health authorities would extend the age limit beyond 65 if it is backed by a national health panel and there is enough supply.

The government  insists it is still on target to vaccinate 70 percent of Spain’s population by the end of summer.

Spain’s virus’ incidence rate remained stable on Monday with an average 128 infections out of 100,000 people in the last 14 days, but Health Ministry officials warned there had been a recent change of trend that foresees an increase in infections.

“The virus has not been defeated. It is in our reach to avoid a new uptick and therefore a fourth wave,” Darias told a televised news briefing.

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