Santa Clara County gives green light for previously paused Moderna vaccine
A 'vaccines only' sign is displayed outside the room where health care workers are receiving the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine at O'Connor Hospital in San Jose, Calif. (San José Spotlight / Vicente Vera, Pool)

County health officials are now instructing local hospitals to begin administering a lot of Moderna vaccines paused earlier this week due to a potential increased risk of allergic reactions.

Santa Clara County received about 21,800 doses of the Moderna Lot 41L20A distributed at the beginning of January, and more than 330,000 of these doses were distributed across the state. Health officials paused administration of the lot after several individuals experienced allergic reactions at a San Diego vaccination site last week.

Local hospitals earlier this week said they had either not administered any vaccines from the lot or had administered some before the pause, but had not recorded any allergic reactions.

“These findings confirm that the systems put in place to ensure vaccine safety are working just as they should,” said Santa Clara County Public Health Officer Dr. Sara Cody. “This latest rigorous, scientific review of possible allergic reactions once again confirmed that the vaccine is safe … People in Santa Clara County can feel confident that vaccinating our community against COVID-19 will save lives and serve as our path out of the pandemic.”

California State Epidemiologist Dr. Erica Pan said the decision to resume vaccinations from the lot was made after convening a scientific safety review group, along with additional allergy and immunology specialists across the state.

“These findings should continue to give Californians confidence that vaccines are safe and effective, and that the systems put in place to ensure vaccine safety are rigorous and science-based,” Pan said. “Members of my family who have qualified to receive the vaccine as health care workers or because of their age have already received the COVID-19 vaccine, and I encourage every Californian to get the vaccine when it’s their turn.”

As of Jan. 21, the county has reported 94,905 cumulative COVID-19 cases and 1,129 deaths.

For common reader questions about Santa Clara County’s vaccine rollout, click here.

Contact Madelyn Reese at [email protected] and follow her @MadelynGReese on Twitter.

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