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Johnson & Johnson vaccine paused

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SPRINGFIELD–In accordance with recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) paused the use of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine out of an abundance of caution last week.

The CDC and FDA are reviewing data involving six reported U.S. cases of a rare and severe type blood clot in individuals after receiving the J&J vaccine.

Jo Daviess County Public Health Administrator Sandra Schleicher talked briefly about the Johnson & Johnson vaccine being paused during a board of health meeting April 13.

“We have 120 doses left of that from April 7’s mass vaccination clinic, but everything is on hold for that,” said Schleicher.

IDPH notified all COVID-19 providers throughout the state to discontinue use of the J&J vaccine.

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In order to keep appointments, IDPH advises providers to use Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines.

Moderna and Pfizer make up the vast majority of doses on hand in the state.

This week, the state’s allocation of J&J was 17,000 doses. For the week of April 18, the expected allocation for the state is 483,720 total doses. Of that total allocation, 5,800 doses were expected to be J&J.

Per federal health authorities, people who have received the J&J vaccine who develop severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain or shortness of breath within three weeks after vaccination should contact their health care provider.

Patients with other clinical questions should contact their health care provider.

IDPH will share information as it becomes available.

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