Columbus, Ohio – With approximately 200,000 doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine in Ohio set to expire on June 23, Governor Mike DeWine issued an urgent communication to vaccine providers today asking them to distribute as many doses as possible to eligible Ohioans, as quickly as possible.
Governor DeWine also is appealing to Ohioans who have not been vaccinated yet: “The time to act is now.”
“For Ohioans who have been waiting to get their vaccine, I urge you to take action now. There are many opportunities throughout the state to get a vaccine,” Governor DeWine said. “The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is one of those options. It is safe and effective and only requires one shot. In just two weeks, you could be protected from this virus. Getting vaccinated is the quickest way out of the pandemic and the fastest way for us to return to the lives we remember.”
DeWine said today that at this time, Ohio does not have legal options for sending the vaccine elsewhere, either to other states or other countries.
The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) has directed all providers to follow a first-in, first-out process for vaccine to ensure doses with the soonest expiration dates are being used first.
ODH also has been working with COVID-19 vaccine providers across the state to identify tactics to use as many doses of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine before they expire. Some of these tactics include forming community partnerships to offer special vaccination clinics, offering more mobile vaccination opportunities in partnering with community groups at community events and for homebound individuals, and offering the vaccine as part of ongoing maintenance programs with congregate setting staff and residents, as well as correctional/detention centers.
According to a release issued today, “More than 5.3 million Ohioans have started the COVID-19 vaccination process, and more than 4.7 million are fully vaccinated. On June 5, Ohio hit a benchmark we’ve long awaited: fewer than 50 cases per 100,000 residents in Ohio. While these are positive signs, the threat of COVID-19 still remains.” (Ohio’s unvaccinated might be in as much danger now as they were in February. But state officials can’t directly track them)
The release also said that the risk of going unvaccinated impacts not only those who choose not to be vaccinated, but to those around them. “Lower vaccination rates put children under 12, who don’t yet have a COVID-19 vaccine authorized for their age group, at risk, as well as the small percentage of Ohioans who can’t be vaccinated, or those with certain immune disorders. The more Ohioans who are vaccinated, the more we can protect ourselves, and one another.”
All of the COVID-19 vaccines have been proven to be highly effective at preventing severe disease and against known variants. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is a single-dose vaccine for individuals ages 18 and older. Because the vaccine is available in one dose, you will be fully immunized just two weeks after receiving the vaccine. This means you can safely and quickly resume activities that you did prior to the pandemic.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is available at provider locations around the state, including local health departments, pharmacies and mass vaccination sites. Visit gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov to find a provider near you and schedule an appointment. Most providers list the available vaccine on their websites and/or social media pages. Many providers will also accept walk-in appointments.
More information about the vaccine is available at coronavirus.ohio.gov.