The woman is in her 60s and received the AstraZeneca/Covishield vaccine on April 11. She received treatment and is now recovering.
According to the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), in the country there have been 18 confirmed reports of vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT), a medical term for a type of blood clot.
Saskatchewan’s confirmed case has been submitted to the PHAC to be included in the national statistics.
So, is this concerning?
No — according to a public health physician and researcher at the University of Saskatchewan.
“Once you give enough doses in a province it’s certainly not surprising that you’ll see one or two cases,” said Dr. Cory Neudorf.
He said the risk of clots is higher in younger women, and as cases go down he expects provinces across Canada to continue assessing whether giving the AstraZeneca vaccine to younger women is worth the risk.
In an email, the SHA told Global News it’s reviewing the role of AstraZeneca as its second dose strategy and will have more information before second doses are due in mid-June.
On Twitter, Dr. Alexander Wong, an infectious disease physician in Regina, echoed a similar message: this isn’t unexpected.
“Everyone who received 1st dose AZ: you ABSOLUTELY 100% made the right decision to get your 1st dose,” he wrote.
More AZ coming to Sask next week
Health-care workers across the country have administered over two million doses of AstraZeneca and AstraZeneca/Covishield. Saskatchewan has administered 72,000 of those doses to date.
Across the world, reported rates of similar adverse events relative to AstraZenca are one in 26,500 in Norway, one in 50,000 in the Netherlands, one in 100,000 in the United Kingdom and one in 127,300 in Australia.
Public health officials said adverse events to any immunization can range from minor, such as local pain and swelling at the injection site, to more severe reactions.
These minor side effects typically happen within a few hours of injection and resolve over a short period of time.
“Immunizers know the signs of allergic reactions and are prepared to take immediate action. This is why all residents are asked to remain at the vaccination clinic for 10 to 15 minutes following their immunization,” a press release stated.
Individuals who experience an unusual or severe reaction after getting the COVID-19 vaccine can report it by calling 811. Those experiencing a severe reaction such as trouble breathing should call 911.
“Any adverse event that may be related to a vaccination is reported in order to continuously monitor the safety of vaccines,” the press release said.
Saskatchewan is expecting more than 20,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine next week.
On Wednesday the health minister said Saskatchewan health would be contacting those who received AstraZeneca first doses to book their second dose.