Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero said the Food and Drug Administration's issuance of Emergency Use Authorization for Johnson & Johnson's single-shot Janssen Covid-19 vaccine will help expedite Guam's goal to immunize 80 percent of the island's population by July 21.
“Our island is leading the nation in vaccination efforts, and the addition of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine ensures we reach our goal of achieving herd immunity as early as the summer months. Its single dosage will allow us to administer vaccines faster and to more people, which translates to more protection for our community,” Leon Guerrero said
. “We will continue to work closely with our federal partners to secure additional allotments to Guam, as we have successfully done in previous months," she added.
Vaccination clinics on Guam are currently suspended due to a vaccine deficit. The 51,200 doses allotted for Guam have all been used up. The Department of Public Health and Social Services has placed an order for more than 35,000 doses and is expecting the shipment to arrive by first week of March.
Janssen was the third vaccine greenlighted by FDA for the prevention of Covid-19. The EUA allows the Janssen vaccine to be distributed in the U.S for use in individuals 18 years of age and older.
“The authorization of this vaccine expands the availability of vaccines, the best medical prevention method for COVID-19, to help us in the fight against this pandemic, which has claimed over half a million lives in the United States,” said acting FDA Commissioner Janet Woodcock.
“The FDA, through our open and transparent scientific review process, has now authorized three COVID-19 vaccines with the urgency called for during this pandemic, using the agency’s rigorous standards for safety, effectiveness and manufacturing quality needed to support emergency use authorization," she added.
The FDA said it has determined that the Janssen vaccine has met the criteria for issuance of an EUA.
"The totality of the available data provides clear evidence that the Janssen Covid -19 Vaccine may be effective in preventing Covid-19. The data also show that the vaccine’s known and potential benefits outweigh its known and potential risks, supporting the company’s request for the vaccine’s use in people 18 years of age and older," FDA said in a press release.
The agency assured the public that it has conducted a thorough evaluation of the available safety, effectiveness and manufacturing quality information related to the new vaccine.
“We welcome as many options that we can avail of to expeditiously reach our goal of protecting as many people as possible, especially individuals most at risk,” said Lt. Gov. Tenorio.