Arizona health officials recommend a pause on use of Johnson & Johnson vaccine

By Stephanie Innes, Alison Steinbach | Arizona Republic

Appointments for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine in Arizona were getting canceled Tuesday morning as federal officials reviewed safety concerns.

The Arizona Department of Health Services late Tuesday morning recommended a pause in the use of the vaccine based on federal concerns, though providers may still administer the vaccine, “if they feel it is clinically appropriate after a discussion with their patient,” a department statement says.

At least three Arizona counties have confirmed they will pause use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, too.

So far in Arizona,122,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been administered out of 226,300 doses available in the state, health officials said. A total of more than 4 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered statewide. The other two COVID-19 vaccines in use are from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna.

Health officials in Arizona counties and at vaccine sites are reworking plans for the week as the federal government recommended a pause in administering the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine to investigate rare, severe blood clots in six individuals who received the vaccine. 

Related: Valley group’s mission to build vaccine trust may be harder with J&J pause

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