EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - We’re following the CDC’s decision to pause the use of the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.
The decision comes after the CDC reported at least six U.S. cases of a rare and severe type of blood clot.
Now health officials say they understand the fear some people may have, but this shouldn’t stop the vaccine efforts.
Less than 24 hours after receiving the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, Ciara Englert saw the news.
“I don’t want to say I feared it, but it did put some concern in my mind,” Englert said. “It is a little frustrating, and I understand things happen, but unfortunately we got it yesterday. So waking up to it today was a little frustrating and thinking had it been yesterday when they made the announcement maybe we would have held off and gotten a different vaccine.”
Health officials say people who have received the J&J vaccine, specifically pre-menopausal women, who develop severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath within three weeks after vaccination should contact their health provider.
“Certainly it’s scary for people to hear something like this so automatically our minds tend to go to the worst. I think it’s very important for us to understand that this was done out of an abundance of caution. This doesn’t mean that this vaccine necessarily caused these clots, but that’s what they’re trying to find out,” Dr. Heidi Dunniway, from Ascension St. Vincent explained.
It’s important to note that officials say a very small percentage of people have had negative side effects to the vaccine. The six reported cases were among more than 6.8 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine administered in the United States.
“So I know it’s frightening for the people who just received it. Certainly watching for those symptoms, seeking medical care if anything unusual should occur, but also it’s important to not let this slow down our vaccination efforts,” Dr. Dunniway said.
As for Ciara, she says she’ll take the extra precautions and meet with her medical provider more often.
“The fact that I’m in the age group that they specified really concerned me, but I’m trying not to let fear take over and just be cautious,” Englert shared.
Officials with Ascension St. Vincent say if you do or already have received any of the COVID-19 vaccines, you can enroll in the CDC’s V-safe program.
It’s a smartphone app that uses text messaging to provide health check-ins after you receive your shot.
You can view more information on the program here.