By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley)– Following a thorough safety review, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have determined that use of the Johnson & Johnson/Janssen (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine should resume.
“After concluding their study, Federal health officials have determined that the benefits of the J&J vaccine outweigh the extremely small risk of blood clotting,” said the County’s Interim Public Health Director Andrew Goldfrach. “They are now advising states to return to inoculating residents with the vaccine.”
San Bernardino County will be making the J&J vaccine available through its mobile clinics, which often target areas or population centers where scheduling a follow-up second dose presents distinct challenges. In addition, local third-party vaccine administrators such as pharmacies and physician practices may be offering the J&J vaccine to patients.
“Though we are offering the J&J vaccine on a limited basis, we nevertheless encourage our residents to receive the shot if it’s offered,” said Goldfrach. “The risk of blood clots is tiny compared to the risks associated with COVID-19.”
On April 13, the CDC and FDA recommended a temporary halt on inoculations with the vaccine “out of an abundance of caution” after six women developed the rare blood clotting condition within two weeks of getting the single-dose vaccine. The cases were both isolated and statistically low — more than 6.8 million Americans have thus far received the J&J vaccine.
While the risk of blood clots or other complications are minimal, Goldfrach advises residents who are offered the J&J vaccine to share information on their medical conditions with their vaccination provider, including if they:
- Have any allergies;
- Have a fever;
- Have a bleeding disorder or are on a blood thinner;
- Are immunocompromised or are on a medicine that affects their immune system;
- Are pregnant, breastfeeding, or plan to become pregnant;
- Are on birth control pills; or
- Have a history of blood clotting problems.
“Don’t hesitate to talk with your vaccination provider and ask any questions you might have,” Goldfrach said. A fact sheet on the J&J vaccine benefits and risks is available on the County website.