J&J Single Shot Vaccine Could Arrive Next Week
Don't fall into the trap of trying to compare one vaccine v/s the other, says Dr. Joseph Kanter
Louisiana could receive up to 38,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine as early as next week, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced at a press conference this afternoon. However, that is contingent upon the vaccine receiving Emergency Use Authorization approval from the Food and Drug Administration.
Unlike the vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna, the J&J vaccine is a single shot dose, rather than two doses given a few weeks apart. In addition, the shot lasts longer and doesn’t have the difficult temperature storage requirements of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.
Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccines are more than 90 percent effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19, the J&J vaccine appears to be 66 percent effective at preventing moderate-to-severe cases. However, that shouldn’t stop you from getting it, if that’s what you’re offered, say health experts. The J&J vaccine trials have shown that it works well against the more contagious UK variant sweeping the state and that there were “zero deaths and zero hospitalizations” 28 days after vaccination.
“This vaccine does exactly what we want when we get vaccinated, which is protect yourself against serious complications and death. That’s why we’re getting vaccinated,” said Dr. Joseph Kanter, Louisiana Department of Health’s interim assistant secretary of the Office of Public Health. “It’s a very good vaccine. One shot is great. Don’t pass up the opportunity… don’t fall into the trap of trying to parse one versus the other.”
The arrival of the new vaccine could mean greater access to Louisiana residents, including the opening of mass vaccination sites and events. Earlier this week, LCMC Health announced that they are ready to open New Orleans’ first community vaccination site at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.
“LCMC Health is here to create a healthier community and with the availability of community vaccines we are doing that across our six hospitals,” said Gregory C. Feirn, CEO of LCMC Health. “We appreciate the support of FEMA, the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, our city and state leaders, and our residents as we continue to rollout COVID-19 vaccinations throughout the New Orleans area. We want to assure the community that when more vaccines are available, we are ready to offer them in mass quantity.”
The center will be opened with help from a $4.1 million FEMA grant and will have the capacity to vaccinate hundreds of New Orleans residents each day.
More than 332,415 Louisiana residents have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, and an additional 593,576 have received their first dose. The state is currently in Phase 1B, Tier 1 of the vaccine rollout. To see if you qualify for the vaccine under the current guidelines, click here.