Johnson & Johnson board member Dr. Mark McClellan said the company expects to deliver 20 million doses by the end of March because the United States is one step away from adding a third safe and effective vaccine to its arsenal.
The former FDA commissioner said in an interview on Friday night: “There will be an acceleration period, so next week is expected to have 4 million doses, which will be higher in March, and 20 million doses will be delivered by the end of March.”
The Food and Drug Administration’s advisory panel voted unanimously late Friday to recommend Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose injection for emergency use authorization. The FDA will decide whether to approve the vaccine as early as Saturday. The recommendations of the consultants of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will activate three to four million doses for shipment next week.
In an interview with Shepard Smith News, McClellan said that joining the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will enable the United States to take a big step forward in addressing the coronavirus pandemic and protecting millions of people from contracting the virus.
“This is based on the growth of Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccine supply. They expect to have nearly 90 million, 100 million doses… These are two doses of vaccine, but in general, we can reach 100 million in the United States by the end of March. Or more people get vaccinated,” said McClellan, a health policy expert at Duke University.
Nationwide, the number of daily average cases, hospitalizations and deaths has been declining for several weeks, but Rochelle Varensky, director of the CDC, said the recent downward trend may be leveling off.
Varensky said: “We may have been infected with this virus, but obviously we are not infected with the virus.” “We are unable to adapt or have a false sense of security that the worst moment of the pandemic has passed. No. Now, not when mass vaccination is very close”
The director of the CDC added that we may start to see the effects of the new, more contagious variant of Covid spreading across the country. McClellan agreed with Varensky and warned that “we should pay attention” when it comes to new variants, but the importance of vaccination has doubled.
McClellan said: “The good news is that vaccines seem to provide a really strong protection against variants. The best way to contain variants is to get as many people as possible to get vaccinated as soon as possible.”