UPDATE: The U.S. is recommending a “pause” in administration of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine to investigate reports of potentially dangerous blood clots.
In a joint statement Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration said they were investigating unusual clots in six women that occurred 6 to 13 days after vaccination. All six cases were in women between the ages of 18 and 48. More than 6.8 million doses of the J&J vaccine have been administered in the U.S., the vast majority with no or mild side effects. Read more here.
As Chicago and Illinois begin receiving additional Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine doses, many residents are wondering where exactly they can find it.
Chicago is projected to receive just under 40,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine this week, Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady said Thursday, marking the city's fourth shipment and the largest of Johnson & Johnson thus far.
"We've got big plans for that Johnson & Johnson," Arwady said. "We're using it to expand the homebound program, we're using it to bring to more manufacturing settings, we're using it to vaccinate everybody who works at O'Hare."
She also noted sites like a mass vaccination site for union workers and a new site opening at Chicago State University will likely receive some of the J&J doses.
Meanwhile, Illinois announced that it is sending "Rapid Response Vaccination Teams" to five counties where epidemiologists "have determined there is a need to administer doses quickly to blunt increasing trends," IDPH said. Those teams will administer single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccinations to residents on top of what the counties are already allocated.
Those counties are: Carroll, Ogle, Boone, Lee and Whiteside. Details on doses and how to make an appointment can be found here.
Oswald’s Pharmacy in Naperville said it began administering the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine on April 1. The Naperville pharmacy received its first shipment of the vaccine Tuesday and offered 100 spots for vaccinations. Those interested can sign up on Oswald’s website to be notified when new shipments come in and more appointments become available, the pharmacy said.
Jewel-Osco is providing the option for customers to choose which vaccine they would like to book an appointment for, when they are available.
On the grocery chain's vaccine scheduler, customers can select whether they would like to check for appointments with the Pfizer or Moderna two-shot vaccines, or the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
"Osco Drug Pharmacy offers customers a choice of vaccines based on the allocation receive," a spokesperson for the company told NBC 5. "We are adding appointments for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine as supply becomes available."
For a comparison of the three vaccines, click here.
Residents can also watch for vaccine events or mass vaccination sites across the state.
Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker received his COVID-19 vaccine Wednesday at the Illinois State Fairground, where he said he was given a Johnson & Johnson shot.
Earlier this month, Aurora held a one-day mass vaccination clinic in partnership with Walgreens where participants were given the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and Des Plaines launched a mass vaccination site that initially administered the single-shot vaccine.
According to Pritzker, doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine are expected to increase heavily in the coming days and weeks.
"We expect to see a significant number, millions of doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine coming beginning very shortly in the next few days," the governor said during a press conference last week. "And then hopefully a sustaining increase in Johnson & Johnson as well as we are continuing to see an increase in Pfizer and Moderna."
But some officials are bracing for a “short-term” impact on the distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccines after quality issues forced Johnson & Johnson to discard 15 million doses of its coronavirus vaccine this week.
Emergent BioSolutions, which was producing both the Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca vaccines at its facility, inadvertently mixed elements of the two vaccines together, causing the J&J doses to be discarded.
“I think it probably will (impact us) in the short term, not the long term,” Arwady said. “I am concerned about it, because the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is very much the vaccine that we’ve been hearing would be majorly increased, especially over these next couple of weeks.”