DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Governor DeWine’s recent plea with vaccine distributors to get approximately 200,000 J&J vaccines set to expire into the arms of Ohioans, shows the fear of side effects still follows the single-dose shot.
“The Johnson and Johnson vaccine scared some people off, but the calculations are that the risk of having a severe side effect from it is much less lower than the risk of getting and potentially dying of COVID,” said Kettering Health Patient Safety Officer Dr. Jeffrey Weinstein.
Along with the fear of J&J, the CDC’s vaccine rate data in the U.S. shows that vaccination rates are slowing significantly. Dr. Weinstein, said fear and misinformation about vaccination side effects are partly to blame for the drop in vaccine rollouts.
“Severe side effects of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, about one in a million. The risk of getting COVID and having an adverse outcome from COVID is a lot higher,” said Dr. Weinstein.
Due to this fear, medical experts say many people either don’t want to be vaccinated, or want Pfizer or Moderna instead.
“If we have enough of those to go around for everyone that’s great, but if we don’t and we have 200,000 doses that are going to expire in a few weeks then we really want to use those. It’s just going to be sad to see a lot of doses go unused because of no demand for it, when we know nationally and even in the state there’s a lot of people who’d really benefit from those vaccines,” said Dr. Weinstein.
The 200,000 unused J&J doses are set to expire on June 23, with medical experts saying spreading accurate information about the safety of both J&J and other COVID-19 vaccines could help in getting people to get the shots.