South Dakota to pause Johnson & Johnson vaccines following CDC’s guidance

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File photo.(WIS)
Published: Apr. 13, 2021 at 10:19 AM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - South Dakota health officials say the state will pause administering Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine after the federal government raised concerns about potential blood clot issues.

Sec. of Health Kim Malsam-Rysdon said the South Dakota Department of Health will follow the CDC’s and FDA’s recommendations to temporarily halt the vaccine “out of an abundance of caution.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday they were investigating unusual clots that occurred 6 to 13 days after vaccination. All six cases were in women between the ages of 18 and 48; there was one death and all remained under investigation.

“I’d like to stress these events appear to be extremely rare. However COVID-19 vaccine safety is a top priority,” FDA Acting Commissioner Janet Woodcock said at a news conference. “We expect it to be a matter of days for this pause.”

Only a small percentage of vaccines administered in South Dakota were produced by Johnson & Johnson. Of the over 500,000 vaccines given to South Dakotans, only 15,743 were Johnson & Johnson doses. Officials say no adverse cases of concern have been identified in the state.

“We remain confident all those who’ve already received the J&J shot have no reason for immediate concern but encourage residents to speak with their medical providers should concerns arise,” Malsam-Rysdon said.

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