FDA and CDC Call for Pause on Distribution of Johnson & Johnson Vaccine

In a joint statement, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have called for an immediate halt on the distribution of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine.

The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices will meet on Wednesday, April 14, to further review these cases and assess their potential significance. Until that process is complete, the agencies are recommending a pause in the use of the J&J vaccine out of an abundance of caution.

This recommendation comes as the agencies investigate six cases of a rare and severe type of blood clot in individuals who received the J&J vaccine. All six cases occurred among women between the ages of 18 and 48, and symptoms occurred six to 13 days after vaccination. Thus far, Over 6.8 million doses of the J&J vaccine have been administered in the United States.

While the recommendation was made “out of an abundance of caution,” it is expected that federally run vaccination sites will temporarily stop distributing the vaccine.

According to the statement, “right now, these adverse events appear to be extremely rare.”

The CDC continues to recommend the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines for all eligible individuals.

Next Steps

The CDC and FDA are expected to issue additional guidance on this matter in more detail after these cases are thoroughly reviewed.

Employers should continue to monitor for additional guidance on COVID-19 vaccines from federal, state and local health officials. Ollis/Akers/Arney Insurance & Business Advisors will keep you updated on any noteworthy developments.

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