FDA, CDC lift pause on J&J vaccine

The Family Medical Center at the Johnson County Healthcare Center will resume administering the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine Wednesday, following a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advisory panel recommendation. The advisory panel stated that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks.

The CDC and FDA recommended a pause in the administration of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine on April 13 following reports of rare blood clots in six women nationally.

Nine more cases were reported, for a total of 15. According to the CDC, the overall rate of events was 1.9 cases per million people.

“In terms of benefits, we found that for every 1 million doses of this vaccine, the J&J vaccine could prevent over 650 hospitalizations and 12 deaths among women aged 18-49, and this vaccine could prevent over 4,700 hospitalizations and nearly 600 deaths among women over 50," CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said.

The FDA has updated the fact sheet for the vaccine, stating that women under the age of 50 should be aware of the risk of a rare blood clotting syndrome. Johnson County Healthcare Center providers have been educated on the symptoms of the rare blood clotting syndrome as well as the appropriate treatment.

“We’re excited to be able to once again offer this vaccine to our community,” said JCHC CEO Sean McCallister. “We appreciate the CDC and FDA’s oversight and thoroughness to make sure COVID vaccines are safe for the public, and we agree that the benefits of the vaccine far outweigh the risks.”

JCHC encourages community members to vaccinate against COVID-19. To receive the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine, call The Family Medical Center at 307-684-2228.   

The community can also receive the two-dose Moderna COVID-19 vaccine from Johnson County Public Health, Corner Stone Pharmacy and Buffalo Prescription Shop.