Fauci believes J&J vaccine will get 'back on track'

His comments come a day after a panel of advisers to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) delayed a vote on whether to resume the J&J shots for at least a week, until it had more data on the risk.

The United States earlier this week decided to pause distribution of the J&J vaccine to investigate six cases of a rare brain blood clot linked with low platelet counts in the blood.

Fauci said the pause was "an indication that the CDC and the Food and Drug Administration take safety very seriously. I hope they make the conclusion of this quickly, and get back on track," he said. "And I believe they will."

Fauci, who is director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and chief medical adviser to the White House, said he worried about the effects of a prolonged delay.

"The concern is that the longer you draw it out, the more there will be concern about not only that vaccine but it might even have an impact on vaccine hesitancy in general," he said.

Once back "on track" he said, "I think we've just got to continue to emphasize that this is a very efficacious vaccine and could be used, and be very, very valuable on the global scene."

Video Transcript

DR. ANTHONY FAUCI: I mean, I think they need to make a decision quickly. I-- the concern is that the longer you draw it out, the more they'll be concerned about not only that vaccine, but might even have an impact on vaccine hesitancy in general. The good news about this is that for people who are hesitant because they're concerned about safety, what's going on here, though some people may have said they pulled the trigger too soon, what you could say is that they take safety really very seriously.

So when they say something is safe, you can be sure that it's safe. I hope they make the conclusion of this quickly, and get back on track. I hope so, and I believe they will. I believe that ultimately it will get back on track. I hope it does, but-- From what I've seen I believe that it will, but I'm going to have to leave that to the regulatory authorities. That's not my decision.

But once it does, I think we've just got to continue to emphasize that this is a very efficacious vaccine and could be used and be very, very valuable on the global scene.