Last month, The Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine was recommended for pause by the CDC as it underwent review. Just a few days before this halt on the vaccine, Albion college had administered the vaccine to students. Though the vaccine is back in circulation as of late April, the CDC’s decision to resume use of the vaccine doesn’t come without skepticism from American citizens.
As of April 12, just before the vaccine’s pause, more than 6.8 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine were administered in the U.S. Six reported cases of women developing a rare and severe blood clot just a few weeks after receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine caused the CDC to call for a pause on distribution. So far, the development of this blood clot has only appeared in women with ages ranging from 18 to 48 with symptoms occurring one to two weeks after receiving the vaccine.
Although the blood clot has only appeared in women, the Food and Drug Administration says there is not enough information to say if a particular subgroup is vulnerable. There have not been enough cases to determine the specific risk factors of the blood clot and what could predispose someone to developing the blood clot.
With the severity of the blood clot some are concerned about their health now that they have received the vaccine. Some Albion students just recently received this vaccine and they are still comfortable with their decision to get the vaccine.
“Had I known about the blood clots, I would have tried to get a different vaccine, but if it was the only vaccine available, I still would have gotten Johnson & Johnson,” said Megan McCulloch, a sophomore from Port Huron. “I may have reconsidered which vaccine I had received, but ultimately I am just happy to be able to do my part in the pandemic.”
Other students had similar viewpoints. Saige Jost, a junior from Saline, agreed with Mcculloch.
“I would have tried to get Pfizer, but I still would have gotten Johnson & Johnson if it was the only one available,” said Jost.
Although these students are happy to have received the vaccine and do their part of the community, both said that they were still nervous after receiving the vaccine due to the controversy surrounding it.
“During the first two weeks, I was nervous, just in case I had a reaction or symptoms, because that is when they are most prominent,” said Jost. “But I am past that mark now.”
Despite considering themselves to be in the clear, Jost and McCulloch said they think research should continue for the sake of others.
“I think further research would be good, but I do not fully believe there is a correlation because there could be other factors,” said McCulloch “I would say until further research is done, my health is not at risk.”
Deciding whether or not to get the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is a personal choice. It’s up to individuals to decide whether or not they believe their health could be put at risk from receiving this particular shot.
“There could be a possible correlation, but it is hard to tell,” said Jost.