The Hawaii Department of Health said today that it anticipates resuming the use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine soon, but has no specific date set yet.
“The Johnson & Johnson vaccine continues to be another valuable tool in the fight against COVID-19,” said DOH in a statement. “Those who do not want to wait for a Johnson & Johnson vaccine are encouraged to schedule a vaccine appointment for one of the other vaccine products as soon as possible.”
The DOH issued the statement after U.S. health officials today lifted an 11-day pause on the use of J&J’s single-dose shot, with scientific advisers deciding that its benefits outweigh a rare risk of blood clot.
Federal health officials ultimately decided that J&J’s one-and-done vaccine is critical in the fight against the pandemic, the Associated Press reported, and that the small clot risk could be handled with warnings to help younger women decide whether to use that shot or an alternative.
The DOH said the screening form for people who elect to receive the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorization are being updated. Once these are updated, the department will resume vaccines.
In mid-April, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration put a pause on the use of the J&J vaccine due to six reported cases of serious blood clots, including one death.
Since then, the government found 15 vaccine recipients who developed a highly unusual kind of blood clot out of nearly 8 million people given the J&J shot, AP reported. All were women, most under age 50. Three died, and seven remain hospitalized.
At the time, the DOH reported having received 47,612 doses and having administered about 17,800 doses of the vaccine, with the remainder in storage.
Vaccine appointments are available at numerous venues, and can be located at hawaiicovid19.com/vaccination-registration.