Dr. Anthony Fauci on Sunday predicted that a warning will be applied to the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine after health officials recommended pausing usage last week—rather than it being canceled altogether.
“I doubt very seriously if they just cancel it. I don’t think that’s going to happen. I do think that there will likely be some sort of warning or restriction or risk assessment,” Fauci, who is the head of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told “Meet the Press.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) advisory panel will again meet next week on how to handle the vaccine. Both the CDC and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommended halting usage of the vaccine amid isolated reports of blood clots. The advisory panel met on April 14 but delayed a vote on whether to limit the single-shot J&J vaccine based on age or sex.
“I don’t think it’s just going to go back and say, ‘Okay, everything’s fine. Go right back.’ I think it’ll likely say, ‘Okay, we’re going to use it, but be careful under these certain circumstances,’” Fauci added.
Fauci, in an interview with CBS News on Sunday, claimed that the FDA’s and CDC’s concerns about the J&J vaccine mean they’re doing a good job.
“One of the things you can take away from all of this is that when the surveillance system, the CDC and the FDA say that something is safe, you can be sure that it’s safe,” he said.
His comments came in contrast to those made by former President Donald Trump and Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who both said the pause in the J&J vaccine was terrible messaging.
“We’re not helped in this regard by the behavior of some of these public health people, particularly in the federal government,” DeSantis said during a news conference in Lakeland, Florida, last week. “How they handled the J&J, I think was a huge mistake.”
The move, he said, significantly affected the public’s confidence in the J&J vaccine.
“If you’re gonna do that, you could’ve done that in a way that was not gonna cause a lot of people to lose confidence,” DeSantis said.
Trump, meanwhile, issued a statement last week saying that the pause was done for “possibly political” reasons, while asserting that the FDA favors Pfizer, another COVID-19 vaccine producer.
COVID-19 is the disease caused by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, also known as the novel coronavirus.