Johnson & Johnson’s coronavirus vaccine is facing a double dose of problems. Georgia is the third state toa vaccine site after eight people suffered adverse reactions to the shot.
Earlier this week, 18 people in North Carolina reported side effects, while 11 people in Colorado reacted to the shot with symptoms ranging from dizziness, nausea and fainting.
“This is a really potent vaccine, and what we’re seeing is some of that potency relating at a very rare side effect that we just have to be aware of,” said Dr. David Agus, a CBS News medical contributor.
All three major U.S. vaccines produced adverse reactions in more than 60,000 people nationwide. For each manufacturer — Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson — just one-tenth of 1% of all people have reported side effects.
Another problem facing Johnson & Johnson is distribution. The company is dramatically scaling back shipments to states by 86% next week.
Meanwhile, Michigan is experiencing dreadful deja vu as some hospital intensive care units near capacity.
“We all know what works and this has to be a team effort. We have to do this together. Lives depend on it,” Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer said.
Whitmer is asking for a two-week pause on indoor dining, in-person learning for high schools and youth sports — a driving factor in new cases among kids.
Pfizer is the first company to seek an expansion of its emergency use authorization to give its vaccine to children as young as 12.
In California, thousands were turned away after being told to show up to one site with extra doses. In New York City, variants comprise nearly 80% of new daily cases, with 45% homegrown. Another 30% are driven by the variant first discovered in the U.K., which is believed to be up to 70% more contagious and more lethal.
Agus is warning Americans not to panic.
“The current vaccines that are out there in the public work against all of the variants,” the CBS News medical contributor said. “Science is overcoming here. And that’s why I think that by June we’re going to overcome this virus in the United States and get to a new normal here.”