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Campus briefing April 13, 2021

Dr. Cheryl True '90, a family medicine specialist in Davenport, joined the campus briefing to talk about the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine recently administered on campus.

On April 13, federal health agencies recommended that the U.S. pause the use of the J & J vaccine after a rare blood clotting disorder was reported in six women.

The Augustana clinic was administered April 10 by Community Health Care, Inc., of Rock Island, and most of the approximately 400 people who participated were members of the campus community.

Dr. True pointed out that the six cases were out of nearly 7 million J & J vaccinations. One woman has died and one is in critical condition.

"These are scary things but we don't know yet if it was related to the vaccine," she said.

She said the pause is expected to last a few days while more information is gathered and given to health care providers.  

"We may see in next couple of days a little bit more information," she said. "For the most part this has been a very safe vaccine."

If a reaction to the vaccine does occur, she said it would be within 6-13 days of vaccination. Symptoms might include swelling or pain in the legs, severe or sudden headache, shortness of breath, chest pain, neurologic symptoms.

Dr. True commended the campus community for its diligence, and said that getting vaccinated is one more step for a safe campus, family and friends.

Dean of Students Wes Brooks asked the campus community to continue adhering to requirements for masking, social distancing and keeping groups small. He reiterated the need to follow public health guidance in dining off-campus at restaurants and bars.

He urged anyone who needs support to use campus resources, such as Student Counseling, peer mentors, community advisors, faculty advisors and online support services.