Pennsylvania's Department of Health Tuesday added more than 6600 new cases of coronavirus. Nearly 2500 people are currently hospitalized with the virus, 534 of whom are in the intensive care unit.
Pennsylvania's Department of Health has told all COVID-19 vaccine providers in the state to stop administering doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine until April 20th at the earliest. It comes after the FDA and CDC both recommended an immediate pause in the distribution of one of the Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine due to concerns about blood clots. The FDA's Janet Woodcock emphasizes there were only six women who reported blood clots within a week or two of being vaccinated. "These events appear to be extremely rare, however COVID-19 vaccine safety is a top priority for the federal government," Woodcock says. More than 6.8-million J&J vaccines have already been administered in the U.S.. For those who have recently received that vaccine, any serious side effects should be immediately reported to their doctor. Health officials emphasize there have been no serious issues with the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines.
The Acting Pennsylvania Secretary of Health says Tuesday's decision to halt administering the Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine due to potential blood clotting issues actually shows how safe the vaccination rollout is. "We have said these vaccines will be the most-scrutinized and watched vaccines ever in history and this step reflects it. The action reflects the federal government's commitment to protect Americans," says Alison Beam. She says if you have an appointment to get the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines, keep it. If you're not sure which vaccine you are scheduled to receive, she says you can rest assured it won't be the Johnson & Johnson vaccine until further notice.
New Jersey vaccination sites are canceling or putting on hold appointments for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine until further notice. Gov. Phil Murphy says his state is following FDA and CDC requests to temporarily halt using the vaccine over blood clotting issues. "In accordance with these recommendations, New Jersey is pausing the use of this vaccine at all sites pending this review. The adverse reactions being investigated appear to be extremely rare," the governor says. Murphy says more than 235,000 doses of the vaccine have already been administered in New Jersey.
Nazareth Area School District Superintendent Dennis Riker says Nazareth middle and high schools should stick with 2-day-a-week in-school classes rather than go to five days a week. He said there isn’t enough room in the middle and high schools to maintain six feet of social distancing for the full student body. Teachers and staff surveyed at the middle and high schools said they prefer sticking with the hybrid model.
There are no injuries reported after gunfire in Easton early Tuesday morning. A vehicle and home in the 100 block of South 11th Street were shot around 2 o'clock Tuesday morning. Two adults and an infant were in the vehicle when it was hit and the home was also occupied at the time. Investigators said it appears there was a "disturbance" before the shooting, and that the vehicle and house were targeted. Police say people on scene were uncooperative with investigators. Authorities are looking for a silver or light-colored Mercedes Benz with a broken left back taillight. It was last seen traveling south on 11th Street, police said.
If you see a lot of first responders at Lehigh Valley International Airport on Saturday, don't panic. It's only a drill. Airport personnel and 35 agencies from around the region will respond Saturday morning to a simulated emergency involving an aircraft. The drill will include an actual fire and 30 volunteer role players. The exercise is set to take place from 8:15 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Saturday.
A lawsuit claiming the Pennsylvania State Police's fitness test is discriminatory against women is ending with a more than $2 million settlement. The U.S. Department of Justice filed the lawsuit in 2014, claiming the fitness tests resulted in a higher percentage of male applicants being hired over femals applicants for entry-level positions since 2003. The DOJ added it violated the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Under the agreement, the state police will compensate those women who were harmed by the employment practices and offer priority hiring relief for up to 65 women.
More than 600,000 people are planning on using either an absentee or mail-in ballot for next month's primary election. The Department of State says they're on pace to set a record for participation in a municipal primary. Applications for a mail-in ballot must be completed by May 11th, with the election one week later.
The American Hockey League says due to league COVID-19 protocols affecting the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, their game scheduled for tonight in Hershey has been postponed. A make-up date has yet to be determined.
A ruling from the New Jersey Supreme Court is being called a big win for supporters of medical marijuana. In a unanimous decision, the court ruled that a construction company must pay for one of their injured employees' medical marijuana. That upholds a January decision from the Appellate Division involving Vincent Hager and former employer, M&K Construction. Hager reportedly uses medical marijuana for an injury he suffered on the job in 2001, at a cost of about $616 per month.