MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Johnson & Johnson said that it has four million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine ready to be shipped “immediately” once it receives emergency use authorization, which could happen this week.
“We want the American people to know that we are doing the work, so that if the EUA is granted, we will waste no time getting this life saving vaccine into the arms of Americans. The company aims to deliver a total of 20 million doses by the end of March,” said White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator Jeff Zients.READ MORE: Child Dead After Being Struck By a Car in Hollywood
The FDA said the company’s single dose vaccine is safe, effective and has met the requirements for EUA.
While, there are still several steps before the vaccine will be available, Florida is already figuring out how to put the Johnson & Johnson vaccine in the mix.
“We are working on how exactly we will use it. Some people are fixated on Moderna, on Pfizer – and we want people to make those choices,” said Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Broward Health is giving 1,000 doses, a day of the COVID vaccine at the soccer stadium in Fort Lauderdale.
CBS4 spoke to 68-year-old Maria Stein who had just received her second dose of the Pfizer vaccine.
“I feel protected, but I will still keep my distance, especially with the flu season here and everything else. I think that’s very important,” she said.
Experts agree because while the vaccines can protect you they are not a cure for COVID.
The Pfizer vaccine requires two doses, 21 days apart, and is 95% effective at preventing illness.READ MORE: Bales Of Weed Wash Ashore On Sugarloaf Key And Big Pine Key
The Moderna vaccine is also two shots, but 28 days apart. It’s nearly 95% effective at preventing illness.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine was overall 66% effective at preventing moderate to severe COVID illness.
The FDA reports it does also seem to work against the new variants now in the U.S.
According to the governor, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine was 100% effective at preventing death and virtually 100% effective at preventing hospitalizations.
Veronica Salazar, an infectious disease pharmacist at Jackson Health North says even though the J&J vaccine has an overall 66% rate at preventing illness, it is another vital tool for controlling the pandemic.
“If you have some kind of protection, even if it’s 66% at least it will give you antibodies, which means some protection versus not having any,” said Salazar. “If you protect yourself, you can also protect loved ones in your house and people you work with. So, the more people vaccinated decreases the rate of transmission and more people having the disease.”
But remember just because you are vaccinated doesn’t mean you can’t get COVID.
“We still don’t know how long the vaccine will protect us. It’s an ongoing study that will provide light. We should still wear a mask practice social distancing because we only have a small portion of the population vaccinated and hopefully there will be more as we get more of the vaccines,” said Salazar.MORE NEWS: Time To Clean Out Those Medicine Cabinets, DEA To Hold Annual Prescription Drug Take-Back With Drop-Off Locations Throughout South Florida
More information will be released in the coming days regarding where the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will be available and who will qualify.