Georgia to start getting Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine later this week

WOODSTOCK, Ga. — Shipments of the newly approved Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine are expected to arrive here in Georgia this week.

The first batch is expected to contain about 80,000 doses. Channel 2′s Tom Regan learned there are plans to start giving teachers some of those doses next week.

The Woodstock Pharmacy has been vaccinating people since January. It hopes to step up the number of people being vaccinated when the new Johnson & Johnson vaccine arrives.

“The key is to get vaccinated one way or another,” said Douglas White, who was getting his vaccination on Monday.

The tens of thousands of Johnson & Johnson vaccinations coming to Georgia will speed up vaccinations, and demand is soaring.

“When are we getting it? We would like to come and get it. We would like to have the Johnson & Johnson,” pharmacist Jonathan Marquess said, telling Regan these are some of the calls he is getting.

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Marquess said he’s asked the state health department for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine but doesn’t know how much he’ll get.

He’d like to have it before two teacher vaccination events in the coming weeks.

“I’m very excited about getting teachers and staff immunized,” Marquess said.

The Johnson & Johnson vaccine provides strong protection against COVID-19 and severe illness with just one shot.

But how long does it take for that protection to kick in?

“If you get your vaccine shot today, in two weeks, you’re going to have that immune response you want to get your protection,” Marquess said.

Mary Hopkinson is getting her second shot of the Moderna vaccine on Tuesday.

“Would you have preferred the Johnson & Johnson vaccine if it were available?” Regan asked Hopkinson.

“It sounded easier to get one shot than having to go back to get the second one,” she said.

Marquess said he will be providing shots to teachers and staff at his Mableton drugstore next Monday.