SUNY Potsdam site offers J&J vaccine for walk-ins

A dose of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine is prepared during a December clinical trial at Rocky Mountain Regional VA Medical Center in Colorado. Michael Ciaglo/Getty Images/TNS

NEW YORK — The one-and-done Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine is back in New York state.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and state Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker on Saturday said the single-shot COVID-19 vaccine would return effective immediately at sites across New York after an 11-day federal suspension over concerns about blood clots linked to the treatment.

“World renowned public health experts from the federal government and our own independent state task force have reviewed the data and reaffirmed that the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine can resume,” the governor said in a joint statement with Zucker. “The vaccine is the weapon that will win the war against COVID ... I urge every New Yorker to take whichever (vaccine) is available to them first.”

The J&J vaccine is the only one with single-shot effectiveness, as the vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses.

The federal suspension came after 15 recipients among the nearly 8 million people given the J&J shot developed an unusual type of blood clot — all of them women and most under age the age of 50. Three died and seven remain hospitalized.

Federal health officials will now offer warnings on the J&J shot to help younger women decide if they should choose one of the other two options.

“The data has shown the vaccine’s known benefits far outweigh the potential and extremely rare risks, but we urge anyone with questions about the COVID-19 vaccines to speak with their health care provider,” said Zucker.

“We will continue to communicate regular updates and guidance from the federal government to providers and the general public about the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and all vaccines on the market.”

Cuomo announced Friday more than 14 million COVID-19 vaccine doses were administered statewide so far, with 30% of New Yorkers now fully vaccinated. More than 1 million doses were administered in the last week, he said.

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