Governor John Carney and the Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) are preparing for a shipment as early as next week of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) Janssen COVID-19 vaccine that was granted Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration Saturday evening. The J&J vaccine is the world’s first single-dose vaccine available to combat COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is currently scheduled to meet Sunday to review scientific data related to the vaccine and vote on recommendations for its use. CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky must still approve the advisory committee’s recommendations, which is expected to occur Sunday as well. The ACIP recommendation and CDC sign-off are the final steps in the approval process before states can begin vaccinating residents.
Delaware is estimated to receive 8,000 initial doses of the J&J vaccine as early as the end of the week beginning March 1. However, ongoing allocations of J&J are expected to be more limited, and while vaccine supply to the state has increased recently, there is still not enough to meet the large demand.
DPH is still developing its plans to distribute the vaccine once received but has posted a position paper, reviewed by the State Ethics Advisory Group, which outlines the agency’s position. DPH will continue to offer all available vaccines equally to eligible populations, and not target any particular population for use of the J&J vaccine.
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