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English health official says have been extracting extra doses of AstraZeneca vaccine

·1 min read

LONDON, Jan 13 (Reuters) - It is possible to get an extra dose out of vials of AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine as well as the one made by Pfizer, the head of immunisation at Public Health England (PHE) said on Wednesday.

In December, the health service gave doctors advice that they could use extra doses of the Pfizer vaccine at their discretion if they could be extracted, and on Wednesday Dr Mary Ramsay said it was happening with AstraZeneca's shot too.

"We have been able to get more vaccine out of each vial, and that's happened for the Pfizer vaccine and it's also happening with the AstraZeneca vaccine. So that means overall, we've got more vaccines to go around," she told lawmakers, adding that PHE had bought the necessary needles "from the start".

"Really very early on we discovered that we're able to get more out of the vials, which is excellent news." (Reporting by Alistair Smout; editing by William James)