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Georgia shifting to Johnson & Johnson vaccine at state-run shot clinics

Published: Apr. 26, 2021 at 9:48 AM EDT|Updated: Apr. 26, 2021 at 4:26 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - With a green light from federal health officials, Georgia and South Carolina have joined many other states in resuming use of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine.

In fact, Georgia will be shifting to that vaccine at its state-operated mass-vaccination sites, including the one at Word of Life Church in Sandersville.

The state-operated sites will be offering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and Pfizer first doses through Friday. First doses of Pfizer won’t be offered after Friday, and second doses will only be offered through May 21.

A mass vaccination site has opened in Sandersville
A mass vaccination site has opened in Sandersville

“As supply and availability of the COVID-19 vaccines has dramatically increased across the state, far more Georgians are now able to easily access the vaccine at their local pharmacy, grocery store, or doctor’s office,” said Georgia Emergency Management Director Chris Stallings.

To schedule a vaccine appointment at a local public health department, please visit https://dph.georgia.gov/covid-vaccine.

To schedule a vaccine appointment or find a state-operated mass vaccination site available for walk-up vaccinations, please visit myvaccinegeorgia.gov.

After a thorough safety review, federal health officials determined that the recommended pause regarding the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine be lifted. Federal agencies advised that a warning should be added to the vaccine about the potential for very rare, but severe blood clots associated with the vaccine.

At the time the vaccine administration was paused, more than 124,000 doses of J&J vaccine had been administered in Georgia. Approximately 211,000 doses are currently in inventory statewide.

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control issued a similar statement, saying “any provider with Janssen inventory, which they have been properly storing since the federal pause, is now able to administer the single-shot vaccine to the public.”

Slightly more than 89,000 people have received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine in South Carolina, according to state health officials. The state has nearly 44,000 doses in its inventory.

Also in the news ...

  • Augusta University Health will open a second pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinic in south Augusta. The vaccination program will kick off at 2:30 p.m. Monday at Diamond Lakes Regional Park, 4335 Windsor Spring Road. You can check state eligibility requirements at augustahealth.org/vaccine prior to registration and all registrations must be completed in advance on the AU Health website. Walk-up and phone appointments are not available. The clinic comes amid a decline in demand for vaccinations, with local providers looking for new ways to reach out to people.
  • The Jefferson County Health Department is now providing the COVID-19 vaccine to individuals 18 years of age and older from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursdays. Vaccination is available at the Jefferson County Emergency Management building, 1841 Highway 24 West in Louisville. To schedule an appointment, visit www.ecph.com or call 478-625-3716.
  • University Hospital in Augusta said today it has 18 COVID-19 inpatients, down from 21 on Friday. The hospital system had 16 COVID-19 inpatients a month ago, 64 on Feb. 23 and about 143 a month before that.

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