Delaware is making plans for the arrival of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, now that it has received Emergency Use Authorization from the Food and Drug Administration.
According to Delaware Public Health and Governor John Carney, the state is estimated to receive 8,000 initial doses of the J & J vaccine, which does not require a second dose. Shipments may arrive as early as late this week.
“We are thrilled to be able to have access to a third safe and effective vaccine in our state,” Carney said Saturday in a written statement. “There is light at the end of the tunnel, but we are not out of the woods yet. Let’s all do what works until we can vaccinate enough Delawareans. Continue to wear face masks. Avoid gatherings. Wash or sanitize your hands frequently. Stay vigilant.”
Ongoing allocations are expected to be more limited and demand continues to run ahead of current supply. DPH is working on a plan to distribute the Johnson and Johnson vaccine once it’s available. Delaware Public Health has posted a position paper reviewed by the State Ethics Advisory Group: CLICK HERE
More details about the Johnson & Johnson vaccine were contained in a Delaware Public Health news release which follows:
The J&J Janssen, Pfizer BioNTech, and Moderna vaccines are all 100% effective at preventing hospitalization and death from COVID-19, and all similarly effective at preventing severe disease from COVID-19. The J&J Janssen vaccine is reported to be 85% effective in U.S. trials at preventing moderate to severe COVID disease, and it is 72% effective in preventing symptomatic infection. The vaccine works by inserting a small piece of the coronavirus’s genetic material into a weakened version of a common cold virus called an adenovirus. The immune system responds by switching on the cells’ alarm systems to activate immune cells nearby. The immune cells then spot the intruder proteins of COVID-19 to fight the infection. The vaccine does not cause coronavirus disease in persons receiving the vaccine.
“Vaccination is a critical tool in bringing this unprecedented pandemic to an end, and I encourage all eligible individuals to get vaccinated with the first vaccine available to you,” said DPH Director Dr. Karyl Rattay. “Having different types of vaccines available for use, especially ones with different storage and handling requirements and dosing recommendations, can offer more options and flexibility for vaccine providers. We remain committed to vaccinating as many eligible Delawareans, as quickly as possible.”
The J&J vaccine has similar storage requirements as Moderna, and is likely to be approved for use by individuals 18 and older, like Moderna as well. The potential side effects from the J&J vaccine are similar to those experienced by people who received the other two vaccines, with the most common being injection site pain, headache, fatigue, and body aches. J&J reported no serious side effects from the vaccine, and there were no deaths directly linked to the vaccine itself. The FDA and CDC will continue to monitor the COVID-19 vaccine for safety and effectiveness and any long-term or rare side effects. The J&J vaccine may not be used to complete the vaccine series for other vaccines.
Those with vaccine-related questions can contact the DPH Vaccine Call Center at 1-833-643-1715 or email their questions to [email protected]. Individuals can also visit de.gov/covidvaccine for up-to-date information and Myhealthycommunity.dhss.delaware.gov/ for vaccine-related data.