Pause On Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine Remains In Place

Stephanie Stahl reports.

Video Transcript

UKEE WASHINGTON: Breaking news-- still on hold, the country's top health officials are saying they need more information before deciding if Johnson & Johnson's coronavirus vaccine is safe to use. This is "Eyewitness News" at 6:00. And we are streaming live on CBSN Philly. Good evening, everyone. I'm Ukee Washington.

JESSICA KARTALIJA: I am Jessica Kartalija. A CDC advisory committee just wrapped up an hours-long emergency meeting, weighing the next step for J&J's vaccine. The meeting comes one day after the vaccine was put on hold following reports of a possible side effect. Health reporter Stephanie Stahl is here now with the breaking details. Hi, Stephanie.

STEPHANIE STAHL: Hi, Jessica. The CDC advisory panel just decided to not vote, which leaves the Johnson & Johnson vaccine on hold for now. Now, this meeting was held virtually, so we couldn't see the advisors. But we could listen in.

- I think we need to not vote and gather the necessary information so that we can make an evidence-based decision.

STEPHANIE STAHL: During the virtual CDC advisory committee meeting reviewing cases of blood clots in people who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the revelation-- one of the patients has a local connection.

- The next case was also reported to Janssen directly, comes from New Jersey in Pennsylvania. The case is a 26-year-old female.

STEPHANIE STAHL: This unidentified woman was hospitalized for a week and a half and has been released. There's no other information about the case.

PHIL MURPHY: We had administered just over 244,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine prior to hitting pause. No one who has received this vaccine should panic or worry. This review by the CDC and the FDA is coming out of an abundance of caution.

STEPHANIE STAHL: The J&J vaccine has been given to 7.2 million people. The committee is reviewing data that at least six women between the ages of 18 to 48 developed a rare and severe type of blood clot within 13 days of being vaccinated.

- Safety has been a premier, paramount issue in our deliberations for this vaccine, for recommendations, and for following the vaccine.

STEPHANIE STAHL: No issues have been linked to the other two vaccines, Pfizer and Moderna. But officials are worried the pause on J&J will increase vaccine hesitancy.

JEFFREY ZIENTS: We believe that by empowering Americans with data and facts, we will strengthen the public's trust in government and increase their confidence in the vaccines.

STEPHANIE STAHL: So the Johnson & Johnson vaccine remains on pause for now until the advisory panel gathers more information. They expect to reconvene in a week to 10 days. And also, federal health officials underscore this should not impact the overall vaccine rollout. There is now plenty of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to fill this void. Jessica?

JESSICA KARTALIJA: All right Stephanie, thank you.