Shoals healthcare providers adjust to Johnson and Johnson vaccine pause


THE SHOALS, Ala. — With the Alabama Department of Public Health’s decision to pause the use of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine comes adjustments among the healthcare community.

In Muscle Shoals, Village Discount Drugs received both the Johnson and Johnson vaccine as well as Moderna, but pharmacist Jerrod Tidwell said the latter was being put on hold anyway.

“We received 1000 doses of the Moderna vaccine,” Tidwell said. “We’ve been booked up with those vaccines for the past few weeks, and over the next few weeks, we’re also booked up with that one. After receiving the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, we decided to put a hold on scheduling any of those appointments just because we were booked up.”

Tidwell said he’s thankful he started seeing reports of the adverse effects before any shots were administered.

Across the river in Florence, the Florence Endocrine Clinic had to stop vaccine efforts altogether because the Johnson and Johnson product was all it received.

Administrator Joshua Jackson said the clinic only offers vaccines to its patients, some of whom have underlying health problems making them more prone to COVID-19.

“We treat mostly patients with diabetes or thyroid conditions,” Jackson said. “A lot of our patients have been able to get vaccines at other sites, but we do have patients who either haven’t had access or just haven’t had opportunity. Those patients will not be able to get the vaccine here until we receive something different or this vaccine is cleared for use once again.”

Both locations are keeping their Johnson and Johnson vaccine supply safely stored until they receive further guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration.

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