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How are Ohio's colleges and hospitals reacting to the recommended pause for the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine?

Six cases of blood clots have been reported out of the more than 6.8 million doses of the J&J vaccine that have been administered in the U.S.

CLEVELAND — Amid the recommended “pause” in using the single-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine by the CDC and FDA, Ohio's colleges and university are reacting on Tuesday, as are hospitals. 

In addition to the statements or press releases given out, we wanted to know answers to the following three questions:

  • When did you first begin giving doses of the J&J vaccine to staff/students? 
  • How many doses of the J&J vaccine have been given by your University since first use?
  • What’s the plan for upcoming appointments that would have used J&J? Do you have alternative vaccine doses available?

Here are the responses we received:

Cleveland State University:

"Out of an abundance of caution and based on guidance from the CDC, FDA, and the State of Ohio, Cleveland State University has paused operations at our student-only vaccination center. Since opening last Thursday, April 8 about 400 students have received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

We’re awaiting further guidance from the state."

Kent State University:

Kent State University will postpone its Johnson & Johnson cllinics “until further notice,” according to a letter to students from the university.

Statement in addition to announcing halting of J&J vaccine:

"The clinics began last Thursday on the Kent Campus and were originally scheduled to end today (Tuesday, April 13).

Monday, we announced that we would continue half-day clinics on Tuesday and Thursdays beginning this Thursday and continuing through the end of the month since we anticipated still having vaccine available for students.

Last Thursday, Friday and Monday combined to vaccinate 1,186 students.

CLICK HERE for guidance on what we can share."

Anybody who had an appointment for a vaccination at one of the Kent State clinics is asked to schedule an appointment for a different brand – either Moderna or Pfizer – at a different location. You can do so using Ohio’s “Get the Shot” site HERE.

RELATED: Kent State, University of Akron halt Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccines: What to do if you already have an appointment for the one-dose shot

University of Akron:

"The university was administering the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine, but will pause following the occurrence of extremely rare blood-clotting events involving six people in the United States after receiving the vaccine," UA officials said in a press release.

Students who have already scheduled appointments to receive the vaccine at University of Akron clinics on April 14-15 will receive an e-mail with additional information.

Statement in addition to announcing halting of J&J vaccine:

"The vaccines were only available to students. Our clinic was held over two days last week (April 8-9) and again yesterday. We were off today (Tuesday, April 13) and were planning to resume Thursday and Friday of this week.

We administered approximately 1,200 vaccines last week and were on pace for at least 300 this week. We completed 90 yesterday and were expecting to resume Thursday and Friday of this week. (As we expected, our numbers were much smaller this week due to it being our Spring Break.)

We are awaiting guidance from the FDA, CDC, State of Ohio and local health officials before we can make any decisions (as far as alternate vaccines/upcoming appointments)." 

Case Western Reserve University:

"In accordance with state and federal guidance, Case Western Reserve is pausing administration of Johnson & Johnson vaccines."

Baldwin Wallace University:

"BW’s vaccine clinic started last Wednesday, April 7 and wrapped up (as planned) at 5 p.m. yesterday, Monday, April 12.

This morning, information on the federal/state pause on the J&J vaccine has been emailed directly to the approximately 700 BW students who received the vaccine at our clinic; the same information has been posted to the COVID-19 area of our website."

Ohio State University:

“In response to the recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to pause the use of Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose COVID-19 vaccine, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center has put an immediate hold on all Johnson & Johnson appointments," the university said to our sister station 10TV in Columbus.

Miami University:

"Miami University received 500 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine last week; however, we have not yet distributed them to our campus community. We will follow CDC guidance and Governor Mike DeWine's instruction on pausing distribution. All the vaccines provided by Miami to date have been Moderna or Pfizer."

Ohio University:

In response to the J & J pause, Ohio has announced that it will shift to the Pfizer vaccine. 

"The Pfizer vaccine requires a second dose 21 days after the first dose, so students need to verify that they can be in Athens 21 days after the first dose to receive the second dose. Those already registered will automatically be offered the Pfizer vaccine as part of that appointment and will be given a follow-up date and time for their second dose during that visit."

CLICK HERE for more information.

Bowling Green State University:

Bowling Green State University also paused administration, removing all upcoming clinics for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine from its calendar. Pfizer and Moderna clinics will continue to run, the university announced in a release.  

Cleveland Clinic:

"Today the FDA recommended a pause in the use of the Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) vaccine following reports of a small number of patients who developed blood clots in the U.S. after receiving the vaccine. We have vaccinated approximately 1,800 individuals using the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine over the past several weeks. At this time, we have not received any reports of blood clots from our patients who have received this vaccine. We have vaccinated more than 175,000 individuals in Ohio. We have currently been allocated the two-dose vaccine made by Pfizer and are using it at our vaccination sites across Northeast Ohio. We do not anticipate that this pause will affect our vaccination program. We will continue to follow the guidance of the FDA and CDC as they complete their review."

MetroHealth:

MetroHealth says they received few doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and had no current appointments for it. 

University Hospitals:

University Hospitals is pausing its distribution of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine after the CDC and FDA have recommended a temporary halt in the use of the single-dose vaccine. As of April 12, UH has distributed 43,727 first doses and 31,267 second doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, the overwhelming majority being either Pfizer or Moderna. UH has distributed fewer than 400 total J&J vaccine doses. 

UH says it first administered the J&J vaccine to patients on March 7, 2021. That day, 234 patients were vaccinated. "We have also vaccinated 130 patients in their homes with the J&J vaccine. None of our patients have shown or reported any adverse effects to our knowledge," UH tells 3News.

UH does not currently have any J&J vaccinations scheduled. The pause on the J&J vaccine does not impact currently scheduled COVID-19 vaccination appointments.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration announced that they were investigating unusual clots that occurred 6 to 13 days after vaccination. The FDA commissioner said she expected the pause to last a matter of days.

The clots occurred in veins that drain blood from the brain and occurred together with low platelets, the fragments in blood that normally form clots. All six cases were in women between the ages of 18 and 48. One person died, and all of the cases remain under investigation.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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