The European Union, which restricted non-essential travel from foreign countries for over a year due to the pandemic, plans to welcome vaccinated American vacationers for summer 2021.
The European Medicines Agency has approved all three authorized U.S.-used vaccines, Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson.
Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, said: “One thing is clear: All 27 member states will accept, unconditionally, all those who are vaccinated with vaccines that are approved by E.M.A.”
Though von der Leyen did not provide a timeline for summer travel, she did say that the U.S. has made “huge progress” towards vaccinating most adults by mid-June.
Over five million Americans, who were inoculated with either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, has skipped their second dose, meaning almost 8% of the first-dose recipients are not fully protected against the virus.
57% of the U.S. population has received at least one vaccine dose; however, only 28.5% of the country’s 330 million people are actually fully vaccinated.
Dr. Leana Wen, a George Washington University professor who received the J&J vaccine herself, advised women under 50 should to find another vaccine after rare incidents of clotting were reported.
Wen tweeted: “I respect @NIHDirector very much. However, I disagree with him strongly.”
Wen pointed out that while the risk for blood clotting is low for the women the risk is higher. “If I knew then what I know now about the risk of a rare but serious blood clotting disorder, I would have chosen another vaccinevaccine, the risk is nonexistent for Moderna and Pfizer.”
Despite J&J critics like Wen, certain states like California and New York have resumed use of the vaccine.
Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Indiana, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia have also signed off on administering the vaccine again.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) tweeted late Saturday: “After additional review of the J&J #COVID19 vaccine, CA will resume administering it immediately. Grateful to count myself one of the 1 million Californians to receive this safe, effective vaccine.”