(CHRISTIANSBURG, Va.) — The New River Health District (Virginia Department of Health) has received 5,000 doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Half of this allocation will go to pharmacies and other vaccination partners in the district, to be given to those ages 65 and up. The other half is for VDH to administer to frontline essential workers in Phase 1b, and those in Phase 1a and high-priority categories of 1b who waited specifically for the one-dose vaccine.

An appointment-only vaccination event is scheduled for Monday, March 8 at Radford University’s Dedmon Center to administer Johnson & Johnson vaccine to these prioritized populations. Due to continued limited supplies of vaccine this is NOT a public event. Vaccines will be given only to those individuals at higher risk of exposure to COVID-19 or of severe illness, including essential workers, in priority order. These individuals and groups will receive invitations and appointments.

Johnson & Johnson vaccines are approved for ages 18 and older; they require only one dose and do not require ultra-cold storage. “All of the approved vaccines are excellent. They are all safe and they all do an excellent job of preventing serious illness, hospitalization and death,” said Noelle Bissell, director, New River Health District. “Those are our biggest public health goals. As vaccine supplies continue to increase, I strongly encourage everyone to get the first vaccine available to them.”

“While cases are decreasing and we are going strong in our vaccination efforts, we need to continue to watch our distance, wear our masks and wash our hands to prevent spread,” Dr. Bissell continued. “It will take time to get enough people vaccinated to achieve herd immunity, and in the meantime we all need to look out for each other.”

Virginia has received a total of 69,000 doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine, to be targeted by VDH for large scale vaccination events across the state. Over time, all vaccine allocations are expected to increase.

To pre-register for COVID-19 vaccine at future events, or for information on COVID-19 in the New River Valley, visit For information on COVID-19 in Virginia, visit