U.S. Calls for Pause on Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 Vaccine

(Reuters/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo)

U.S. federal health agencies on Tuesday recommended pausing the use of Johnson & Johnson‘s single-dose COVID-19 vaccine after six recipients developed a rare disorder involving blood clots.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will hold an advisory meeting on Wednesday to review the cases.

All the six recipients were women between the ages of 18 and 48. One woman died and a second in Nebraska has been hospitalized in critical condition, the New York Times reported, citing officials.

The CDC and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said in a joint statement that the adverse events appear to be extremely rare right now.

As of April 12, more than 6.8 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been administered in the United States.

The White House said that the federal government has a large enough stockpile of Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to be able to fully vaccinate all American adults regardless of if the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is available, CNN reported.

“If you do the math, there is plenty of supply to continue to vaccinate Americans at 3 million per day, and then some. That’s not to mention the fact that there are many doses that have already been distributed into states,” Andy Slavitt, the White House’s senior adviser for Covid-19 response, said. “I think we’re in the fortunate position, we have to remind ourselves, where we have three vaccines approved that are very effective vaccines, but we are also importantly not dependent upon this.”

The company’s shares were down 3% before the opening bell.

The move from the U.S. regulators comes less than a week after Europe’s drugs regulator said it was reviewing rare blood clots in four people in the United States who received the shot.

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