Fewer than 1 in 4 Americans not yet immunised against the coronavirus are willing to take the vaccine made by Johnson & Johnson, due to broad mistrust after government health officials briefly paused the use of the single-shot for safety reasons, a Washington Post-ABC News survey showed on Monday.
“The nationwide survey shows that slightly fewer than half of US adults overall say they consider the Johnson & Johnson vaccine very or somewhat safe after its use was halted this month following reports of rare, severe blood clots”, the Washington Post reported, making public the findings of the poll.
The Post said two other coronavirus vaccines authorised for emergency use in the United States — one developed by Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech and the other by Moderna — elicit significantly greater public confidence. More than 7 in 10 people say they regard each of those two-shot vaccines to be very or somewhat safe, the poll found.
The unwillingness of about 3 in 4 unvaccinated US adults to get the Johnson & Johnson shot points to hurdles facing the Biden administration and state and local public health officials in restarting use of a vaccine that was once heralded for its convenience.
The same Washington Post-ABC News survey, however, found that 64 percent approved of President Joe Biden’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Food and Drug Administration on 13 April temporarily paused the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine after six cases of blood clots in combination with low levels of blood platelets were confirmed in women between the ages of 18 and 48.
The two federal agencies lifted the pause on Friday, although the CDC continued to warn about the increased risk of very rare but severe blood clots. The Washington Post-ABC News survey was carried out before the pause was lifted.
The United States has been worst hit by the COVID-19 pandemic since its global outbreak last year, accounting for over 32 million confirmed cases of the virus from a global tally of more than 147 million. A total of more than 572,000 Americans have died from the pandemic, from a worldwide death toll of 3.1 million.
As of 25 April, at least 38.9 percent of the American public have received at least one shot of a COVID-19 vaccine, while 24.6 percent have been fully immunised against the virus.