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Johnson and Johnson vaccine could be key to the distribution slowdown

Dr. Noelle Bissell says new vaccine is a “huge” convenience.

A single-dose vaccine could help vaccinate more underprivileged communities, according to authorities.
A single-dose vaccine could help vaccinate more underprivileged communities, according to authorities.

ROANOKE, Va. – With the U.S. Food and Drug Administration deeming the Johnson and Johnson safe to use and effective, it could be key to helping solve the distribution dilemma in the Commonwealth.

Despite the Johnson and Johnson vaccine being 66% effective, Dr. Noelle Bissell, the director for the New River Health District, said it will work.

“66% is better than zero percent,” she said. “We say this every year about flu vaccinations. Even flu vaccinations are not even that high.”

Requiring standard refrigeration temperatures, Bissell said the vaccine is a more convenient dose to deliver and administer.

Hoping to arrange future drive-thru vaccination events, she said it would be the prime vaccine to use.

“The Johnson and Johnson works very well if you are going to do a big drive-thru event because again it’s a one-time dose,” she said. “You don’t have to worry about people coming back to get the second dose.”

By being a single-dose shot, Bissell said, “it’s a great vaccine for populations that logistically we have a hard time getting two doses.”

An advisory committee will review the FDA’s endorsement of the vaccine on Friday to determine emergency use authorization.

But if approved, Governor Ralph Northam said the state can expect to see these vaccines arrive as early as next week.


About the Author:

Alexus joined 10 News in October 2020.