Federal health agencies on Tuesday recommended pausing the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine after a small number of people experienced “a rare and severe type of blood clot” after receiving the shot.
The Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a statement saying they were “recommending a pause in the use of this vaccine out of an abundance of caution.”
Some 6.8 million people have received the single-shot vaccine in the United States. Of these, six have experienced the clot, the agencies said, adding: “Right now, these adverse events appear to be extremely rare.”
“The CDC and the FDA are taking these concerns about blood clots and the J&J vaccine seriously and are diligently assembling data,” the official said.
An expert outside the government who is familiar with the situation agreed that health officials are taking the matter seriously.
“The CDC is very concerned and they’re very working hard on this and monitoring this closely,” said the expert, who spoke on the condition of anonymity due to the sensitive nature of the issue.
There have been “four serious cases of unusual blood clots” reported after people received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, according to European health authorities. Like their US counterparts, the European authorities say they’re still investigating these cases and that “it is currently not clear” whether there’s a causal association between the vaccine and the clots.
The concern in the United States isn’t just about the Johnson & Johnson shot per se. At a time when US health officials are encouraging Americans to get vaccinated as soon as they can, there’s a worry that news coverage about clots being studied in relation to Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine might make some Americans more hesitant to get any Covid-19 vaccine.
Vaccine hesitancy is already an issue in the US, and officials at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the US Food and Drug Administration are “thinking through how to communicate about the issue without creating the impression that something might be wrong with the [Johnson & Johnson] vaccine,” the federal health official said.
Another expert familiar with the situation said that was the right approach, stressing the importance of communicating without scaring people.
“I would hope that HHS is having a confab about this right now,” the expert said, referring to the US Department of Health and Human Services.
In a statement, Johnson & Johnson said its tracking of side effects revealed “a small number of very rare events following vaccination. At present, no clear causal relationship has been established between these rare events and the [Johnson & Johson] COVID-19 vaccine.”
The FDA released a statement last week that it was aware of reports of “serious thromboembolic events” in the US that occurred “in a few individuals following receipt of the [Johnson & Johnson] COVID-19 vaccine” and that “at this time we have not found a causal relationship with vaccination.”
Over 8,000 Nigerian Doctors Now Work In UK, 353 Registered In The Last 100-Day
The United Kingdom (UK) registered about 353 Nigerian doctors in the last 100 days, according to data from the General Medical Council – the body which licenses and maintains the official register of medical practitioners in the UK.
The GMC licensed at least 353 Nigerian-trained doctors between June 10, 2021, and September 20, 2021.
The statistics also showed that between July 24, 2020, and September 21, 2021, about 862 Nigeria-trained doctors were licensed in the UK despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
The data also showed that 8,737 doctors who obtained their degrees in Nigeria currently practice in the UK.
Officials of the National Association of Resident Doctors are speculating that the rate of migration might double in the coming weeks since doctors were not given the right remuneration.
They said that many Nigerian doctors are migrating to Saudi Arabia, which might be more than those moving to the UK.
A poll by NOI in 2018 showed that 88 percent of Nigerian doctors were considering work opportunities abroad, but experts say the figure may be higher due to the rising insecurity and economic crunch.
Elections in Africa Must Follow Democratic Process – Osinbajo
Africans must continue to make the extra effort in ensuring that elections in the continent go through the democratic process, remain transparent and fair, according to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN.
He said this yesterday while receiving the President-elect of Sao Tome and Principe, Mr. Carlos Manuel Vila Nova who paid him a courtesy visit at the Presidential Villa.
On the 18th of July, 2021, elections were held in Sao Tome to replace President Evaristo Carvalho, whose tenure expired on 3rd September, 2021. Based on constitutional provisions, an outright winner did not emerge from the polls and a run-off led to the emergence of Mr. Vila Nova, who would be sworn in 2nd October, 2021.
According to Prof Osinbajo “there is no question at all that for those of us in Africa, we must make the extra effort to ensure that the democratic process is very transparent. It is such a pleasure to see that that was what took place in your country which led to your election.”
Speaking about areas of cooperation between both countries, the Vice President said, “we already talked about some of the areas of cooperation…your tenure might be an opportunity to bring some of those things to fruition.”
Prof Osinbajo reassured Mr. Manuel Vila Nova of Nigeria’s support to ensure that “your tenure is as comfortable and effective as possible as partners and friends.”
In his own remarks, President-elect Vila Nova expressed appreciation to President Muhammadu Buhari for supporting Sao Tome and also thanked the Vice President for his attention, stating that Nigeria is a “friendly country” and the relationship between both countries dates back many years.
In attendance at the meeting were the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Zubairu Dada, and a member of the Sao Tome and Principe’s cabinet, Mr. Americo de Oliveira Ramos.
Ethiopian Airline To Resume Flight To Enugu Oct. 1st
The Ethiopian Airline said on Sunday it would resume flights to Enugu as from Oct. 1, two years after it suspended flight to the South-Eastern state.
The airline’s General Manager, Shimeles Arage, who confirmed the proposed resumption in a statement issued in Lagos on Sunday, said that every week there would be a flight on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, with B787 Dreamliner.
“Oct. 1 is Nigeria’s Independence Day and the flight to Enugu on that day will reinforce Ethiopian Airline good relations with Nigeria since the first flight to Nigeria in 1960,” he said.
Arage recalled that the airline stopped flights to Enugu in 2019 when the Nigerian aviation authorities closed the airport to refurbish the runway.
He said before the closure of the airport for runway repairs, Ethiopian was the only international airline flying to Enugu.
The airport was officially re-opened to domestic flights in 2020 and to international flights in Aug. 2021.
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