Texas providers authorized to resume use of Johnson & Johnson vaccine

Photo of a gloved hand holding a vaccine vial
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention briefly recommended a pause on administration of the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine due reports of rare blood clots in several recipients. (Olivia Aldridge/Community Impact Newspaper)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention briefly recommended a pause on administration of the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine due reports of rare blood clots in several recipients. (Olivia Aldridge/Community Impact Newspaper)

Texas providers of coronavirus vaccinations have the green light to administer the Johnson & Johnson vaccine again following a safety review by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration. The Texas Department of State Health Services announced April 24 that providers should resume administration of the single-dose vaccine.

“The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is an important tool in our fight against COVID-19, and the scientific review over the last 11 days has affirmed its safety and effectiveness,” DSHS Commissioner Dr. John Hellerstedt said in a news release. “We know some Texans prefer the simplicity of a single-dose vaccine, and the ease of storing and handling this vaccine gives providers more flexibility. Resuming the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will prevent hospitalizations and save lives in Texas.”


The CDC and FDA recommended U.S. providers pause the use of the J&J vaccine April 13 following reports of a rare and severe blood clot occurring in several vaccine recipients. The CDC and FDA conducted a safety review and found the risk of the clots to be "very low" with 15 out of the total 6.8 million people who had received a dose experiencing the clots, and the vaccine to be "safe and effective."

“Above all else, health and safety are at the forefront of our decisions,” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said in a statement. “Our vaccine safety systems are working. We identified exceptionally rare events—out of millions of doses of the Janssen COVID-19 administered—and we paused to examine them more carefully. As we always do, we will continue to watch all signals closely as more Americans are vaccinated."

J&J doses were absent from DSHS allocations this week, but more than 140,000 doses were included in the state's April 13 allocation when the nationwide pause went into effect, so some providers may have doses available.
By Olivia Aldridge

Multi-Platform Journalist

Olivia hosts and produces Community Impact Newspaper's podcasts, The Austin Breakdown, The Houston Breakdown and The DFW Breakdown. She launched the podcasts after nearly three years as a reporter for the newspaper, covering public health, business, development and Travis County government for the Central Austin edition. Olivia worked as a reporter and producer for South Carolina Public Radio before moving to Texas.