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Georgia pauses use of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine

Johnson and Johnson
Posted at 12:44 PM, Apr 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-13 13:00:58-04

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia health officials are pausing all vaccinations of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine following guidance from the federal government.

The Georgia Department of Public Health made the announcement early Tuesday, shortly after the federal authorities say they will investigate rare but serious cases of blood clots in some people who received the vaccine.

In a joint statement Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration said they were investigating unusual clots in six women that occurred 6 to 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.

Georgia universities, health systems and others on Tuesday said plans to use the vaccine have also been put on hold as they await further guidance from the federal government.

In southwest Georgia, the Phoebe Putney Health System said that it had recently received its first shipment of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

“We had planned to begin offering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine in limited circumstances soon; however, we will wait for further guidance from the CDC and FDA before deciding whether or when to do so,” Dr. Dianna Grant, the system's chief medical officer, said in a statement Tuesday.