SEATTLE - The Washington State Department of Health said Johnson & Johnson blood clot risk is less than one in a million, but paused injections Tuesday out of an abundance of caution.
"We recognize this is a very rare side effect, one in a million, and it's critical that one of the reasons by the federal government and federal partners to put a pause is for doctors and healthcare providers to have time to better treat this and learn where the vaccines have gone, so they’re not delivering and administrating them to our community partners," said Dr. Umair Shah, WA Secretary of Health.
Injections of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine came to a pause across the country after six women who got the single-shot developed rare but serious side effects including brain blood clots combined with low platelet count.
The FDA says the women were between the ages of 18-48 years old and developed symptoms 6-13 days after vaccination.
Symptoms include severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, and shortness of breath. Anyone who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine within three weeks and develops symptoms should contact their health care provider.
Nearly 7 million Americans received the Johnson & Johnson shots so far with little to no side effects. The DOH says the Johnson & Johnson vaccine makes up only 6% of the vaccines in the state and believes there will be minimal impacts to the state’s reopening or vaccine eligibility.
"We’re confident this vaccine pause for Johnson and Johnson will be lifted in a matter of time and believe this will be back into to mix and delivered safely to our community members," said Shah.
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan says if you had a Johnson & Johnson appointment with the City of Seattle, your appointment will remain and you will receive the Pfizer vaccine.
The Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department says it will switch to the Moderna vaccine. For pharmacies like CVS and Rite Aid, they will reschedule you for either Pfizer or Moderna.
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