The COVID 19 vaccine rollout is facing a major hurdle today as FDA makes a major announcement about the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
They’re recommending a pause in its use “out of an abundance of caution.”
Federal public health authorities have identified six cases of rare and life-threatening blood clots, all of which affected women between the ages of 18 and 48. One woman has died and at least one is hospitalized in critical condition, according to the New York Times.
In accordance with the order, all federal distributors of the vaccine will halt use immediately, and they are asking state facilities to follow suit.
With almost 7 million doses distributed already, the 6 with serious side effects seems like an insignificant number. Especially considering CDC stats that suggest up to 600,000 people in the United States alone develop blood clots. The FDA defends the dramatic decision saying that “the particular blood clotting disorder that the vaccine recipients developed, known as cerebral venous thrombosis, is extremely rare.”
Of interesting note, that’s the same disorder linked to the AstraZeneca vaccine which has impacted its rollout in Europe.
The White House seems to be downplaying the impact of the pause, with a statement that says “This announcement will not have a significant impact on our vaccination plan.”