The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration called for pauses on injections of Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose coronavirus vaccine today, after six recipients of the vaccine experienced a rare blood clotting reaction.
All six were women between the ages of 18 and 48 and all developed the illness within one to three weeks of vaccination, according to The New York Times. One woman died and a second woman has been hospitalized in critical condition.
In the CDC and FDA’s joint statement, they note that “As of April 12, more than 6.8 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been administered in the U.S.”
They add that, “Right now, these adverse events appear to be extremely rare.” Indeed, it is a less than 1 in 1 million occurrence.
“CDC will convene a meeting of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) on Wednesday to further review these cases and assess their potential significance. FDA will review that analysis as it also investigates these cases. Until that process is complete, we are recommending a pause in the use of this vaccine out of an abundance of caution. ”
Jeff Zients, White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator released a statement today, saying “Johnson & Johnson vaccine makes up less than 5 percent of the recorded shots in arms in the United States to date… the United States has secured enough Pfizer and Moderna doses for 300 million Americans.”
He added, “We are working now with our state and federal partners to get anyone scheduled for a J&J vaccine quickly rescheduled for a Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.”