A panel of experts unanimously recommended yesterday that the United States be given an emergency license for the Johnson & Johnson monovalent Covid-19 vaccine for people 18 years of age and older.
The opinion of this committee, composed mainly of independent scientists, is advisory, but confirms the possible approval of the vaccine by the American health authorities, which is expected.
The vaccine will be licensed by the US Federal Drug Administration (FDA).
For the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, approval was granted the day after the committee issued a positive opinion.
Millions of doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine are ready to be distributed in the country as early as next week.
After studying the data from clinical trials in detail, the 20 experts estimated that the benefits of the vaccine outweighed the risks of using it.
“We are in a struggle against the new variants,” said one of the experts, Dr. Jay Portnoy, justifying the decision.
The J&J vaccine has already started to be given in South Africa.
Apart from being unique, this vaccine also has the material advantage that it can be stored at refrigerated temperatures, which will greatly facilitate its distribution.