Drive-Through Vaccination Clinic Set For This Weekend in Yelm Canceled Following J&J Hold

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A drive-through vaccination clinic set for this weekend at Yelm High School has been canceled following the nation’s hold on one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccines. 

Hundreds were due to receive the vaccine on Saturday, April 17 during a day-long vaccination clinic hosted by Yelm Community Schools and Tim’s Pharmacy and Gift Shop, but on the morning of Tuesday, April 13, state and federal health officials ordered a hold on J&J vaccine administrations following instances of blood clots associated with the vaccine. 

“On (April 13), the CDC and FDA issued a statement of guidance to pause the use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, pending a review,” read a statement on the event’s registration website. “To follow that guidance, we will be postponing the COVID vaccine clinic that was scheduled to take place on Saturday, April 17, at the Yelm High School.”

This clinic would have been the second time Tim’s Pharmacy and Yelm Community Schools held a clinic together. Last month, the two teamed up to vaccinate more than 450 educators and eligible recipients. This second clinic would have been the first large-scale vaccination effort under new state eligibility allowing anyone 16 and older to receive the vaccine. 

About 149,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been administered in Washington state so far, and the risk of developing a blood clot complication is believed to be very low for those that have received the vaccine more than a month ago. 

“People who have received the J&J vaccine who develop severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath within three weeks after vaccination should contact their health care provider,” the state Department of Health said in a news release. “It also demonstrates how well the robust vaccine safety monitoring systems work, since this potential safety concern was identified quickly and vaccines were paused to allow for further investigation.” 

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