Is the Johnson & Johnson Vaccine Safe?


By Maddie Galesi, Staff Writer

The FDC administered a halt on all Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccines on April 16th due to abnormal side effects. On April 23, the single-shot vaccines were being manufactured again despite the rare reactions. 

A rare blood-clotting disorder was found in six recipients. All six were women between the ages of 18 and 48 and all developed the illness within one to three weeks of vaccination. One woman in Virginia died, and a second woman in Nebraska has been hospitalized in critical condition.

“We are recommending a pause in the use of this vaccine out of an abundance of caution,” says Dr. Peter Marks, the director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, in early April.

Johnson & Johnson said they would delay the distribution of its vaccine in Europe and other foreign nations, where several countries were said to start administering it that week.

During the pause of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, medical and scientific teams at the FDA and CDC examined available data to assess the potential of different health risks such as thrombosis involving the cerebral venous sinuses, or large blood vessels in the brain. 

After careful consideration and extensive research, the FDC and CDC found that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks. They also concluded that getting thrombosis-thrombocytopenia syndrome is highly rare with this vaccine. 

“We’re not going to stop that provider from administering the vaccine because it wouldn’t be right,” says Marks.  

“We are confident that this vaccine continues to meet our standards for safety, effectiveness, and quality,” FDA commissioner Janet Woodcock says. “We recommend people with questions about which vaccine is right for them to have those discussions with their health care provider.”

President Biden claims that there are enough vaccines for every “solitary American.” The problem is not whether there is enough supply, but many Americans are hesitant to get vaccinated. 

Over two hundred million vaccines have been given and 25.9% of the country has been vaccinated. 

Many students are eager to get their vaccine.

I feel as though it is very important to get vaccinated as soon as possible in order to return to normalcy,” says Sophomore Daniella Brunetti. “I do not know enough about the different vaccines to make a decision on which vaccine I would get, but my mom got Moderna and my dad got Johnson & Johnson and they feel perfectly fine.” 

Sophomore Alex Ferriera feels the same way.

I think the strides modern medicine has made to develop a vaccine in such a short time are amazing. Personally, I’ve received the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine because it’s the only one approved for ages 16 and up.”

The Pfizer vaccine is available to those 16 and older. Getting vaccinated is the next step in fighting this pandemic considering over two million doses are administered each day. Vaccines are supplied at Walgreens and CVS here in Wayne.

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