DeWine: ‘The time to act is now’ before 200K J&J vaccine doses expire

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine issued an urgent appeal Monday evening to COVID-19 vaccine providers and Ohioans who have not been vaccinated to not let thousands and thousands of vaccines go to waste.

Approximately 200,000 Johnson & Johnson doses in Ohio are set to expire June 23, according to a release from the governor. The single-dose J&J vaccine is authorized for adults 18 and older.

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“The time to act is now,” DeWine said to unvaccinated Ohioans.

“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,” 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.”

Ohio does not have legal options to send the vaccine elsewhere, either to another state or other countries in need of vaccine, the release stated.

The Ohio Department of Health has directed all providers to follow a first in, first out process for vaccine to ensure that doses with the soonest expiration dates are used first.

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More than 5.3 million Ohioans have started the COVID-19 vaccination process, and more than 4.7 million are fully vaccinated. On Saturday, Ohio hit a long-awaited benchmark of fewer than 50 cases per 100,000 residents in Ohio. However, the threat of COVID-19 remains, the release said.

The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is available from providers around the state, including local health departments and pharmacies. 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 also will accept walk-in appointments.

More information about the vaccine is available at coronavirus.ohio.gov.