The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup completed its review of the federal process and has concluded that use of the Johnson & Johnson (Janssen Biotech) COVID-19 vaccine should resume in the western states. The Workgroup provided its confirmation recently to the Governors of California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington.
On Friday, April 23 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) lifted its pause on the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, following a review by a federal vaccine safety review panel. The Workgroup further recommended that vaccine information fact sheets be culturally and linguistically appropriate, and available in multiple languages at an accessible reading level to inform conversations between health care providers and vaccine recipients.
Washington, Oregon and Nevada joined California’s COVID-19 Scientific Safety Review Workgroup in October. The Workgroup, made up of nationally-acclaimed scientists with expertise in immunization and public health, has concurrently and independently reviewed the FDA’s actions related to COVID-19 vaccines. It will continue to evaluate other COVID-19 vaccines as they go through the federal process.
“After additional review, analysis and scrutiny, experts have concluded the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is safe, effective and will protect you against the COVID-19 virus,” said California Governor Gavin Newsom. “To date, about a million Californians have already received this vaccine – including myself and many of the state’s top doctors. I encourage all Californians to trust the science, getting vaccinated is the best way to protect ourselves and our loved ones and end the pandemic.”
“The benefits of the one-shot Janssen vaccine clearly outweigh the risks – that’s what the short pause allowed leading scientific minds to study and review, at both the federal and state level,” added Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak. “As one of many Nevadans who gladly took this vaccine when it was offered to me, I look forward to resuming the use of the vaccine in our State, along with the Moderna and Pfizer products. Every shot in an arm puts Nevada one step closer to recovery.”