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High hopes for Johnson & Johnson’s Covid vaccine have collapsed in US

But manufacturing issues at a Baltimore plant run by Johnson & Johnson’s contractor Emergent BioSolutions had serious consequences for the vaccine. Due to a major production incident that resulted in a two-month shutdown of operations, Johnson & Johnson was essentially forced to endure the brunt of the pandemic in the United States while Pfizer and Moderna, the other vaccine makers licensed by the federal government, have supplied almost all of the country’s vaccine stock.

Johnson & Johnson had to throw away the equivalent of 75 million doses, and regulatory authorities in Canada, South Africa and the European Union have also decided to withdraw millions of additional doses produced at the Baltimore plant. The company was only able to deliver a quarter of the 100 million doses promised to the federal government by the end of the month.

Alaskan Chief Medical Officer Dr Anne Zink said in her state, Johnson & Johnson’s shooting had become a victim of its own timing. By the end of February, when cleared by the Food and Drug Administration, Alaska had figured out how to get two-dose vaccines to remote areas, leaving the one-shot regimen less crucial than it had imagined. at the beginning.

Dr Clay Marsh, West Virginia’s Covid-19 Czar, said Johnson & Johnson’s hiatus and subsequent clearance – more than two months after those from Pfizer and Moderna – deprived it of an “effect. of halo “. By the time West Virginia had a sufficient supply of all three vaccines, he said, “people began to understand that maybe there is something better about being immunized with Pfizer and Moderna. “.

The Johnson & Johnson shot had also suffered from a “social network effect,” said Andrew C. Anderson, a public health professor at Tulane University who studies vaccine reluctance. Most Americans who were vaccinated in the first few months of the vaccination campaign received injections of Moderna and Pfizer, so their friends and family were less likely to stray and accept a different brand.

In Louisiana, hospitals in the New Orleans area have started offering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine to people discharged from the emergency room; the idea is that people will be more likely to accept the vaccine when a doctor who treated them asks them to take it. And in Arkansas, where only a third of the population is fully vaccinated, state officials are offering doses of Johnson & Johnson to workers in agriculture, manufacturing, sewage and poultry, with gift certificates for hunting and fishing licenses as a reward.

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