Coronavirus Vaccine Update, April 30th 2021
Statement on Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine usage in Baltimore City.
After a thorough evaluation, the CDC and FDA recommended resumed usage of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine on April 23, concluding that based on the evidence and review by independent clinicians and scientists, the benefits of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine far outweigh the risks.
The Johnson and Johnson vaccine was paused after 15 cases of severe blood clots, known as Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome (TTS) were discovered, out of the more than 8 million Johnson & Johnson doses administered in the United States. This extremely rare event is only linked to the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, no TTS cases have been reported after administration of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine.
The TTS cases all occurred in women, the majority under 50 years old, and no link was found with pregnancy or oral contraceptive use. Due to the risk of this extremely rare, but serious event, women in this age range should give thought to the risk and benefits of receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, and may choose to receive the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine instead. For women 50 years old and over and men of any age, the risk of TTS is close to zero and should not impact vaccine choice.
The Baltimore City Health Department will resume the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine starting May 3, 2021. Johnson & Johnson vaccine may be used to vaccinate hard-to-reach populations and individuals that prefer a single-dose vaccine. Baltimore City residents continue to have the choice to receive the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine at a location that administers these specific vaccines.
We recommend COVID-19 vaccine providers administering Johnson & Johnson vaccine, provide alternative vaccine options (either mRNA vaccine) for women 18 - 49 years old at the time of vaccine counseling. COVID-19 vaccine providers administering Johnson & Johnson should especially counsel women 18 - 49 years on the rare risk of TTS and signs and symptoms of TTS. The amended Johnson & Johnson EUA should be provided to all Johnson & Johnson vaccine recipients prior to administration. COVID-19 vaccine providers should report adverse events after vaccination to VAERS.
The COVID vaccinations are life-saving, safe, and effective. Baltimore City Health Department is committed to ensuring the safety and health of all Baltimore City residents. We encourage residents to speak with their healthcare professional or contact the health department at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions about vaccinations.
Coronavirus Vaccine Update, April 23rd, 2021
The Baltimore City Health Department is excited to announce an expansion of our Call Center to assist City residents in making COVID-19 vaccination appointments, as well as connecting residents to resources to help them get through the pandemic. Our call center specialists are ready to assist, please call (443) 984-8650 Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM-6:30 PM and Saturdays from 9:00 AM-1:00 PM. Assistance is available in most languages!
Coronavirus Vaccine Update April 21st, 2021
Great news Baltimore! The University of Maryland Baltimore has set up a direct COVID-19 vaccine appointment website at https://www.umaryland.edu/get-the-vaccine/! Appointments are available!
Coronavirus Vaccine Update April 13th, 2021
Statement of the Baltimore City Health Department's pause of using Johnson and Johnson Vaccine
This morning, the Centers for Disease Control and the Federal Drug Administration recommended a pause in the use of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, to look into the possibility of blood clots forming in an extremely small number of younger patients. Accordingly, the Baltimore City Health Department is pausing the use of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine until we receive further information from our federal and state partners.
This pause will not significantly impact our local vaccination operations. The Baltimore City Health Department is utilizing the Moderna vaccine at our Baltimore City Community College vaccination clinic, as well as at our mobile vaccination clinics. We will continue to provide the Moderna vaccines to residents, as we await more details regarding the Johnson and Johnson vaccine. To date, the Baltimore City Health Department has received 1400 doses of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, making up approximately 3% of our first dose vaccination supply.
While the number of individuals who have reported experiencing blood clots remains small, people who have received the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, who develop a severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath within three weeks after vaccination should immediately contact their health care provider.
Coronavirus Vaccine Update April 12th, 2021
Vaccination Appointments are currently available!
Baltimore City is now in Phase 3. All Baltimore City residents 16 and older are eligible for COVID-19 vaccination and are encouraged to pre-register for their vaccine online at our new website, covax.baltimorecity.gov. Older adults without internet access, or those with intellectual or developmental disabilities can also call the Maryland Access Point (MAP) hotline 410-396-CARE (2273) to record their interest in receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. All those who call or sign-up online will be contacted for scheduling their appointment.