J&J Vaccine Worries Resurface as Belgium Halts Inoculations Over Patient Death

May 27, 2021

Belgium has halted inoculations with Johnson & Johnson’s (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine for individuals under 41 years old following the death of a woman who received the shot.

The woman suffered serious side effects from the inoculation, including severe thrombosis and platelet deficiency. The country has administered an estimated 40,000 shots of the one-dose regimen, with 80 percent of the vaccinated individuals over the age of 45 years.

Belgian officials said the suspension would remain in effect “pending a more detailed benefit-risk analysis” by the European Medicines Agency (EMA).

The EMA concluded in April that the benefits of the J&J vaccine in preventing COVID-19-related hospitalization and death outweighed the risk of blood clotting, but also said the product should carry a warning about the possible side effect.

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