White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator Jeff Zients said on Tuesday that federal health agencies’ recommendation to pause Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine would not cause a major disruption to the Biden administration’s vaccine rollout program.
“This announcement will not have a significant impact on our vaccination plan: Johnson & Johnson vaccine makes up less than 5 percent of the recorded shots in arms in the United States to date,” Zients said in a statement.
The official stated that the 300 million doses of Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccines secured by President Joe Biden meant there was “more than enough supply to continue the current pace of vaccinations of 3 million shots per day, and meet the President’s goal of 200 million shots by his 100th day in office.”
Earlier on Tuesday, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a joint recommendation advising health care providers to stop administering J&J’s vaccine “out of an abundance of caution” while the agencies investigate the six reported cases of blood clots after the patients received the vaccine.
The agencies noted that the clots “appear to be extremely rare.”
During the FDA and CDC’s press conference on their announcement, acting FDA Commissioner Janet Woodcock said the pause was expected to last for “a matter of days.”
Shortly after the FDA and CDC made the recommendation, several states announced they would cease the distribution of J&J’s vaccine.
The pharmaceutical company said on Tuesday that it was “aware of an extremely rare disorder involving people with blood clots in combination with low platelets in a small number of individuals who have received our COVID-19 vaccine.”