The Biden administration paused the distribution of Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccinations on Tuesday after six recipients in the United States developed a “rare and severe” disorder involving blood clots after receiving the vaccine.
According to a statement released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), six women between the ages of 18 and 48 developed a blood clot within about two weeks of vaccination. One woman died and a second woman has been hospitalized and is in critical condition.
“We are recommending a pause in the use of this vaccine out of an abundance of caution,” The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) wrote on Twitter Tuesday.
6.8 million people in the United States have received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine as of April 12.
“The U.S. CDC & FDA are reviewing data involving 6 reported U.S. cases of a rare & severe type of blood clot in individuals after receiving the vaccine. Right now, these adverse events appear to be extremely rare,” the FDA said.
“I know that the information we are providing today is going to be very concerning for Americans who have already received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and I want to let you know what we’re doing to learn more and to protect people in the meantime and what you can do to be on the alert,” Dr. Anne Schuchat, principal deputy director of the CDC, said during a Tuesday press conference. “There have been six reports of a severe stroke-like illness linked to low platelet counts.”
“For people who recently got the vaccine within the last couple weeks, they should be aware to look for any symptoms,” Schuchat said. “If you received the vaccine and develop severe headaches, abdominal pain, leg pain or shortness or breath, you should contact your healthcare provider and seek medical treatment.”
“Importantly there are three vaccines available and we are not seeing the clotting events with low platelet counts with the other two vaccines,” Schuchat continued.
Johnson & Johnson said the “safety and well-being of people who use our products” remains the company’s number one priority.
Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy
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CA to provide all low-income illegal immigrants health care at a cost of ‘$2.7 billion a year’
On Thursday, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a $307.9 billion operating budget “that pledges to make all low-income adults eligible for the state’s Medicaid program by 2024 regardless of their immigration status” reports the Associated Press.
The guarantee of free health care for low-income immigrants here illegally, is a “move that will provide coverage for an additional 764,000 people at an eventual cost of about $2.7 billion a year” adds the AP.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, a health care nonprofit, people living in the country illegally in 2020 accounted for roughly 7% of the population nationwide, or about 22.1 million people. The border crisis and number of migrants entering the United States illegally has skyrocketed to historic levels since 2020 when President Joe Biden took office.
Medicaid nationwide is the current combination of federal and state governments assisting Americans and low-income adults and children to receive free health care, but the federal government does not cover those living here illegally.
“Some states, including California, have used their own tax dollars to cover a portion of health care expenses for some low-income immigrants” reports the AP. “Now, California wants to be the first to do that for everyone.”
“This will represent the biggest expansion of coverage in the nation since the start of the Affordable Care Act in 2014,” said Anthony Wright, executive director of Health Access California, a statewide consumer health care advocacy group. “In California we recognize (that) everybody benefits when everyone is covered.”
While 92% of Californians currently have some form of health insurance, “that will change once this budget is fully implemented, as adults living in the country illegally make up one of the largest groups of people without insurance in the state” the AP concludes.
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