PHILADELPHIA (TUSEN) – Use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine is on hiatus due to blood clot issues in a handful of women. Philadelphia Health Commissioner Dr Thomas Farley joined Eyewitness News on Wednesday morning to discuss the effect it will have on vaccination progress in Philadelphia.
The current Johnson & Johnson vaccine hiatus is not expected to have a huge impact in Philadelphia, as the city was able to quickly switch to Moderna and Pfizer vaccines on public sites, Farley says.
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He says people who have already received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine shouldn’t worry.
“They shouldn’t be worried,” Farley said. “This has happened, again, one in a million people who get vaccinated. Usually this happened within the first two weeks after the vaccine, so most people who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine went by this window. Also, just to point it out, it’s much more common for people to have complications from the infection than the vaccine, so people really shouldn’t be worried about the vaccine – should be more concerned about the epidemic and worry about it. protect against that.
Farley says that with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine hiatus, anyone 16 and over who wants to receive the COVID-19 vaccine should start scheduling their appointments now. He hopes all eligible people will receive the vaccine.
Many people are wondering how long it will be before the CDC resumes distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and what that will look like in the future. Farley first says they’ll likely wait and see if more cases come to light in the United States.
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“Then look to see if there is a common pattern here, which looks like maybe vaccine related or just random occurrence, it could be that,” Farley said. “The people at the CDC have said they might be able to restart the vaccine in a few days, so we’ll follow their recommendations.”
The federal government is expected to receive enough additional vaccine doses of Moderna and Pfizer vaccines to start as scheduled in case the break on the Johnson & Johnson vaccine continues.
Farley reminds people that complications from the Johnson & Johnson vaccine are extremely rare and once you are eligible residents should not hesitate to get the vaccine.
“As we pointed out, if it’s a complication with the Johnson & Johnson, it’s extremely rare, like the likelihood of being struck by lightning. In addition, the other vaccines available are fundamentally different technologies. Today 190 million doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine have not seen this complication, so these are extremely safe, ”said Farley.
Meanwhile, preliminary results from Moderna’s phase three trials show that its vaccine is over 90% effective for at least six months after vaccination. The vaccine is also believed to be over 95% effective against serious illnesses.
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The CDC is holding an emergency meeting on Wednesday to discuss the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.