America’s temporary hiatus from using Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine Covid-19 will not affect President Joe Biden’s goal of bringing the nation to a semblance of normalcy by Independence Day, said the dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health on Tuesday.
“I think this is going to be a blip on the calendar when it comes to getting Americans vaccinated,” said Dr. Ashish Jha. “I don’t think it will affect the timeline at all.”
Federal health officials advised on Tuesday that the US should temporarily stop using J & J’s single-dose vaccine after six of the roughly 6.9 million people who received the shot reported severe blood clots. The blood clots occurred in women between the ages of 18 and 48 years. One woman died and another is in critical condition. They all developed symptoms 6 to 13 days after the shot, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration.
Jha told CNBC’s “The News with Shepard Smith” that the precautionary measures are evidence that “the system is working” and that the government’s swift action could counter the hesitation of the vaccine.
“I hope that it actually builds trust in people, that we don’t take adverse events lightly and investigate them, and that we really make sure that these vaccines are very, very safe.”
Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergies and Infectious Diseases, reiterated that the break is “out of caution” and will give health officials time to investigate.
“You want to make sure that security is the important issue here,” Fauci said during a press conference at the White House on Tuesday. “We are fully aware that this is a very rare occurrence. We want this to work as soon as possible.”
Jha told host Shepard Smith that he “expects the break to be days, not much longer,” reiterating Fauci’s claim about the rarity of blood clots.
“The key point here is that this is an incredibly rare, adverse event,” said Jha. “It won’t affect very many people and I think, out of caution, we’ll just pause to see what else we can find out about it.”