NJ halts J&J COVID vaccinations, following federal guidance, after blood clot reports

Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine vials

FILE – This Saturday, March 6, 2021 file photo shows vials of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine in the pharmacy of National Jewish Hospital for distribution in east Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

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TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey followed federal guidance and put Johnson & Johnson vaccines on hold, Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli said Tuesday.

Persichilli said all of the state’s vaccination sites will cancel or postpone appointments for the J&J vaccine. Gov. Phil Murphy said the state will work with facilities to provide Pfizer or Moderna vaccines instead.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday they were investigating unusual blood clots that occurred in six Johnson & Johnson vaccine recipients between six and 13 days after vaccination.

The clots occurred in veins that drain blood from the brain and occurred together with low platelets.

All six cases were in women between the ages of 18 and 48. There was one death and all remained under investigation.

New York and Connecticut also followed the federal guidance and suspended all Johnson & Johnson vaccine appointments.

More than 6.8 million doses of the J&J vaccine have been administered in the United States.

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