Texas gives green light to continue rollout of Johnson & Johnson vaccine after 11-day pause


In this March 6, 2021, file photo, boxes stand next vials of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Vaccine providers in Texas are now able to continue administering the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.

The state’s Department of State Health Services lifted its pause on the vaccine on Saturday morning after determining that its benefits outweigh the risks.

It had been paused since April 13, when the vaccine safety system identified six cases of blood clots in connection with the vaccine.

The CDC estimates that the vaccine will prevent more than 2,200 intensive care admissions and 1,400 deaths in the U.S. over the next six months.

“The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is an important tool in our fight against COVID-19, and the scientific review over the last 11 days has affirmed its safety and effectiveness,” said Dr. John Hellerstedt, DSHS commissioner.

“We know some Texans prefer the simplicity of a single-dose vaccine, and the ease of storing and handling this vaccine gives providers more flexibility. Resuming the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will prevent hospitalizations and save lives in Texas.”

With the vaccine rollout resuming, DSHS is asking people to closely monitor their health for three weeks after receiving the vaccine.

People should seek medical attention if they experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Leg swelling
  • Persistent abdominal pain
  • Severe or persistent headaches or blurred vision
  • Easy bruising or tiny blood spots under the skin beyond the site of injection.

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