Missouri COVID-19 vaccinators may resume the administration of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine after a temporary pause.
Friday, April 23, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services announced J&J vaccine distribution will resume in the state per a Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announcement.
After six U.S. cases of rare and severe blood clots were reported in women between the ages of 18 and 48 in relation to the J&J vaccine, administration of the vaccine was paused on Tuesday, April 13.
The blood clot, cerebral venous sinus thrombosis, is found in the blood vessels that drain blood from the brain and is combined with low platelets, according to a Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services press release.
The American Red Cross defines platelets as part of blood that, “control bleeding in our bodies, so they can be essential to surviving surgeries such as organ transplant, as well as fighting cancer, chronic diseases and traumatic injuries.”
According to an update from the CDC on Sunday, April 25, a review of the data, completed by the FDA and CDC “shows that the J&J/Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine’s known and potential benefits outweigh its known and potential risks.”
The CDC does recommend women younger than 50 years old be aware of the increased risk and notes other vaccine options are available for which this risk has not been observed.
Missouri State University and the Springfield-Greene County Health Department administered 6,131 J&J vaccines during their Mega Vaccination Site in early April.
“We do have J&J vaccines in stock,” David Hall, director of university safety, said. “Magers (Health and Wellness Center) is currently reviewing the data from the CDC, and we expect we will resume offering the J&J vaccine very soon.”
The university has not set a date to resume administration of the J&J vaccine.
Although side effects are rare, the FDA and CDC recommend anyone who develops a severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain or shortness of breath within three weeks of receiving the J&J vaccine should contact their health care provider.
Follow Greta Cross on Twitter, @gretacrossphoto
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