In accordance with recommendations by federal and state health officials, Sonoma County is once again distributing the one-dose Johnson and Johnson vaccine after a two week pause. In a statement Health Officer Dr. Sundari Mase said the vaccine is safe and the risk of developing blood clots is extremely rare, less than 2 cases per million doses overall and seven cases per million for women between 18 and 49 years old. Mase said she supports an additional warning label so people can make an informed decision.
The majority of 3,000 still-good J&J doses being stored in the county will be distributed to Fox Home Health, a private health care agency that is vaccinating homebound seniors and unsheltered residents. Because the J&J vaccine is just one dose, it’s been especially useful in vaccinating vulnerable, hard to reach individuals. But Fox Home Health CEO Cheryl Fox says offering choice is key.
"We are in hopes that the people that are unsheltered will accept the Johnson and Johnson. And if they will not then we will be giving them the Moderna and following up with them in four weeks to give them the second dose, and hope for the best," Fox said.
Fox said five community vaccine clinics throughout the county closed due to the J&J pause but will resume within a week. The county did not receive any J&J doses this week and will find out Wednesday how many doses it will receive for next week.