NEW YORK (WKBW) — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Saturday that the state will resume administering the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, effective immediately.
This comes after health officials in the United States lifted the 11-day pause on Johnson & Johnson vaccinations following a recommendation by a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advisory panel.
"World-renowned public health experts from the federal government and our own independent state task force have reviewed the data and reaffirmed that the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine can resume," said Gov. Cuomo. "The state of New York will resume administration of this vaccine at all of our state-run sites effective immediately. The vaccine is the weapon that will win the war against COVID and allow everyone to resume normalcy, and we have three proven vaccines at our disposal. I urge every New Yorker to take whichever one is available to them first. The sooner we all get vaccinated, the sooner we can put the long COVID nightmare behind us once and for all."
"Yesterday evening, following a thorough safety review, the CDC and FDA lifted the recommended pause on the COVID-19 Johnson & Johnson vaccine and said that the United States can resume the use of the vaccine for adults, 18 years of age and older. Following discussions with New York State's Clinical Advisory Task Force and Governor Cuomo, I recommend that New York State accept the federal recommendations and resume Johnson & Johnson vaccinations effective immediately.
The data has shown the vaccine's known benefits far outweigh the potential and extremely rare risks, but we urge anyone with questions about the COVID-19 vaccines to speak with their healthcare provider. We will continue to communicate regular updates and guidance from the federal government to providers and the general public about the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and all vaccines on the market.
We encourage all New Yorkers to get whichever vaccine is available to them, as quickly as possible, so we can finally defeat this virus and continue our path towards fully reopening our communities and economy.
Western New York doctors weighed on who should take the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.
"It depends how comfortable you are with these lottery level odds of potentially having an adverse reaction. If you're a one shot and done sort of person, needle adverse, it's difficult to get to vaccine sites or have mobility issues, the Johnson and Johnson vaccine may still be the perfect vaccine for you," Dr. Thomas Russo, the professor and chief of infectious disease at the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University at Buffalo, said.
"If you're a woman 18-50, and could get the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, get the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. If the only choice you have is Johnson and Johnson, especially in an area that's having increased cases, then it's worth while getting the Johnson and Johnson vaccine," Dr. Chet Fox, chief medical officer at Urban Family Practice, said.
Dr. Russo and Dr. Fox said any vaccine is better than no vaccine.
"I think for all 7 billion of us, one of three things is going to happen. We're going to get COVID and live, we're going to get COVID and die, or we're going to get vaccinated against COVID," Dr. Fox said.
"If you get infected with the new coronavirus and develop COVID, the likelihood of you developing serious blood clots and many other bad manifestations of this infection are far more likely than the highly unlikely possibility it occurs with vaccination," Dr. Russo said.
Overall, Dr. Russo and Dr. Fox said if you're uncomfortable with the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, choose the Moderna vaccine or Pfizer vaccine.