San Joaquin County health care providers stopped their distributions of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine and replaced it with Moderna after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended a pause.
The recommended pause was due to six rare cases of blood clots from the vaccine. Among the 6.8 million people who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, six reported blood clots after receiving their dose.
San Joaquin County Public Health Officer Maggie Park wrote in a statement that Public Health Services, a division of the county Department of Health and Human Services that deals with public health, notified all providers to make them aware of the changes with the vaccines.
Following the announcement, the Stockton Arena’s mass vaccination site led by Kaiser Permanente that opened April 7 to vaccinate thousands of people, began delaying their daily doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccines in order to follow the CDC and FDA’s suggestion.
“The goal is to not cancel or postpone any appointments due to the pause, rather supplement the supplies with on-hand vaccines,” Park said.
Jordan Scott, Kaiser Permanente’s media relations representative for the Central Valley, said that Kaiser worked with the county to obtain a number of doses that would allow the site to continue providing vaccinations.
Hundreds of people lined up at the Stockton Arena on Tuesday to see if they could still get the vaccine and which vaccination would be given out after the CDC’s and FDA’s statement.
“I came at about 15 minutes till nine because my appointment was at 9 and we had to leave because the vaccine wasn’t here,” resident Carolyn Nixon said.
Some residents said they didn’t care what vaccine they received as long as they got a vaccination.
“Even if it’s not Johnson & Johnson I am still willing to get the vaccine because I just need to get vaccinated and I am already here,” Helen Huerta said.
As of now, the Stockton Arena will continue to distribute Moderna vaccinations until further notice.
“Public Health Services is also providing our partners additional doses of Moderna or Pfizer so they can continue their vaccination events,” Park said.