U.S. Health Agencies Lift Pause On Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 Vaccine Use

The United States will resume use of Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine, leading health regulators said on Friday, ending a 10-day hiatus to investigate the vaccine’s link to extremely rare blood clots but potentially fatal.

Scientific advisers have decided that its benefits outweigh the rare risk of unwanted side effects.

The agencies made the decision following a meeting of CDC external advisers that recommended ending the immunization break. The decision follows investigations by agencies into the risks of the vaccine. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said in a joint statement that health systems and vaccinees would be warned of the risk of a syndrome. potentially fatal involving severe blood clots and low platelet count.

“We no longer recommend a break in the use of this vaccine,” CDC director Rochelle Walensky told a press conference, adding that the vaccine could be used from now on.

Earlier Friday, the CDC panel voted 10-4 that Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine is recommended for use in people 18 years of age and older, the parameters of its current FDA clearance.

“The benefits clearly outweigh the risk from a population and individual perspective,” said Dr. Beth Bell, advisory board member and clinical professor at the University of Washington in Seattle.

“The committee’s recommendation is an essential step towards the continuation of urgent and safe vaccinations for millions of people in the United States,” Johnson & Johnson Scientific Director Paul Stoffels said in a statement.

The FDA will update the vaccine’s emergency use authorization to include information about the risk and how to recognize and treat the disease, Johnson & Johnson executives told the panel. – Reuters

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