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Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine is safe, FDA analysis says. Here’s what happen next

Johnson and Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine may be the next one to be approved for emergency use

This September 2020 photo provided by Johnson & Johnson shows the investigational Janssen COVID-19 vaccine. Johnson & Johnson’s long-awaited COVID-19 vaccine appears to protect against symptomatic illness with just one shot – not as strong as some two-shot rivals but still potentially helpful for a world in dire need of more doses.
This September 2020 photo provided by Johnson & Johnson shows the investigational Janssen COVID-19 vaccine. Johnson and Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine may be the next to be approved for emergency use.
Cheryl Gerber, Johnson & Johnson via Associated Press

Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective, according to a new analysis from the Food and Drug Administration, The Wall Street Journal reports.

  • This sets up the potential for a third COVID-19 vaccine for the United States, which would help increase the number of people getting vaccinated and speed up the return to normal.

Findings for J&J vaccine:

  • The FDA analysis found that the J&J vaccine is 66.1% effective in preventing moderate to severe symptoms of the novel coronavirus, according to The Wall Street Journal.
  • The study reviewed 44,000 patients in the U.S., South Africa and other countries. Of those, seven people who received a placebo died from COVID-19. There were no deaths among those who received the vaccine, The Wall Street Journal reports.
  • The FDA report found the vaccine was 66.9% effective at least 14 days after vaccination and 66.1% effective 28 days after receiving it, according to CNN.

Key quote

  • “There were no specific safety concerns identified in subgroup analyses by age, race, ethnicity, medical comorbidities, or prior SARS-CoV-2 infection,” the analysis said, according to CNN.

What does it mean for Utah?

Utah Gov. Spencer Cox commented on the Johnson & Johnson news on Twitter, saying this means more doses for the Beehive State.

  • “And remember, this is a one shot vaccine...so the equivalent of 40 million Pfizer/Moderna doses. Also, Pfizer and Moderna have delivered around 80M doses so far, but will deliver a total of 200M by end of March!”

Utah will begin distributing the COVID-19 vaccine to people with underlying medical conditions beginning March 1.

So what’s next?

  • The FDA will hold an all-day meeting on Friday to review the data. The FDA will likely “give the vaccine a thumbs up, likely leading to an FDA authorization for the vaccine within the next few days,” according to USA Today.