An Oxford scientist who worked on the AstraZeneca vaccine says he thinks scientists and politicians “probably killed hundreds of thousands of people” by damaging the reputation of the jab.
Professor Sir John Bell said: “They have damaged the reputation of the vaccine in a way that echoes around the rest of the world.
“I think bad behaviour from scientists and from politicians has probably killed hundreds of thousands of people – and that they cannot be proud of.”
The rollout of the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab in the UK saw Government advisers recommending under-40s should be offered alternatives due a link to very rare blood clots.
Fears over links to blood clots also saw countries including Germany, France, Spain, Italy, The Netherlands, the Republic of Ireland, Denmark, Norway, Bulgaria, Iceland and Thailand pause their use of the jab.
The vaccine has also not played a significant role in the booster campaign. The BBC reported it accounted for only 48,000 of the more than 37 million booster doses given in the UK.
Sir John’s comments to the BBC come as around three in ten local areas in the UK recorded a week-on-week rise in case rates on Friday.
Scotland recorded two more coronavirus deaths and a further 5593 positive cases of the virus on Saturday while hospital admissions fell.
There were 958 people across the UK in hospital on Saturday with recently confirmed Covid-19, down from 990 on Friday and from 1291 on the same day last week.