Statesboro’s city government has had to change its plans for a COVID-19 vaccination clinic for city employees and their family members because of the nationwide pause in use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
City Manager Charles Penny had announced more than a week ago that a clinic offering that single-dose, or “one and done” vaccine just for the city government’s employees and their dependents would be held at City Hall this coming Monday. After the CDC and FDA halted administration of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine this week because of a rare blood-clotting side effect, city Public Information Officer Layne Phillips said the employee clinic will still be held but now with the Moderna vaccine.
Unlike the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the Moderna vaccine requires a second dose, typically 28 days after the first.
“So we’ll set up a second clinic at a later date for them to come back and get their second shot,” Phillips said.
These things were being worked out with the city’s provider for the vaccinations, East Georgia Healthcare Center, and the city clinic is not open to the public.
Health Dept. too
Meanwhile, in an online statement, the Southeast Health District of the Georgia Department of Public Health, which includes Bulloch County, announced Tuesday that it was pausing all “Johnson & Johnson vaccine administration based on recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA).”
The Health Department is also continuing to administer the Moderna vaccine to the public.
The CDC and FDA, in a joint statement, reported that “a rare and severe type of blood clot,” cerebral venous sinus thrombosis, or CVST, was seen in combination with low levels of blood platelets in six women between the ages of 18 and 48, six to 13 days after they received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. This was out of more than 6.8 million doses of the vaccine that had been administered in the United States.
An advisory committee was to meet Wednesday to review the situation further, the national agencies stated in their announcement.