WHO Grants Emergency Use Authorisation To Johnson & Johnson Vaccine.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has today, Friday, March 12, issued emergency use authorisation for Johnson & Johnson’s coronavirus vaccine, paving the way for the one-shot dose to be used as part of the United Nation’s international vaccine distribution effort.
The greenlight from the WHO, which comes a day after the European Union approved the shot, means that countries that receive shots through the UN’s COVAX effort, which promotes equitable distribution of vaccines, could now quote the new endorsement. The vaccine provides fewer logistical hurdles than other shots given that it requires just one dose instead of two and does not need to be stored in ultra-cold temperatures like the Pfizer/BioNtech vaccine.
“Every new, safe and effective tool against COVID-19 is another step closer to controlling the pandemic,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement. “But the hope offered by these tools will not materialize unless they are made available to all people in all countries.
“I urge governments and companies to live up to their commitments and to use all solutions at their disposal to ramp up production so that these tools become truly global public goods, available and affordable to all, and a shared solution to the global crisis,” he added.
COVAX has already announced an initial deal with the pharmaceutical firm to obtain and distribute 500 million vaccine doses, though the arrangement is not legally binding. The WHO has also granted emergency use authorizations for vaccines from Oxford/AstraZeneca and Pfizer/BioNTech. COVAX is in the process of distributing doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine and preparing to roll out doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech shot.
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