FDA panel endorses Johnson & Johnson’s one-dose Covid-19 vaccine
A panel of expert advisers to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Friday voted to recommend authorisation of Johnson & Johnson’s one-dose COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use, bringing it an important step closer to a U.S. rollout.
The panel consisting of doctors, infectious disease experts and medical researchers voted unanimously that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh its risks in people age 18 and over.
“We believe our COVID-19 vaccine candidate has the potential to help change the trajectory of the pandemic and stand ready to make it available to protect the public as soon as possible,” Dr. Paul Stoffels, J&J’s chief scientific officer said in a statement.
The company said it is prepared to supply its vaccine immediately if it receives emergency use authorisation (EUA), as expected. J&J has said it will be able to ship three million to four million doses of its vaccine next week.
The company expects to have enough supply to vaccinate 20 million people by the end of March.
Senior White House adviser Andy Slavitt tweeted that the FDA would meet to finalise the EUA on Saturday. “A third safe and effective vaccine is very welcome news,” he said.
More than 50 million vaccine shots have been administered nationwide, a milestone highlighted by President Joe Biden on Thursday.
But the emergence of highly contagious new virus variants has only enhanced the urgency to get hundreds of millions more people inoculated against a virus that has claimed the lives of more than a half a million people in the United States…..read more