A Food and Drug Administration, FDA, advisory panel in the United States has unanimously endorsed booster doses for the Johnson and Johnson single-shot Covid-19 vaccine.
It’s not certain as of yet which way the FDA itself will rule on the matter but the agency has rarely gone against the decisions of its experts.
Ultimately the decision could have implications for thousands of Jamaican’s who’ve taken up that jab.
Chevon Campbell tells us more.
It’s no longer one and done!
The FDA panel is advising that boosters for the Johnson and Johnson originally single shot vaccine should be offered at least two months after initial immunization.
J and J had asked the FDA for flexibility with its booster, arguing the extra dose adds important protection as early as two months after initial vaccination, but that it might work better if people wait until six months later.
The FDA’s advisory panel voted unanimously that a booster should be offered without setting a firm time.
The advisers cited growing worries that recipients of J&J’s vaccination seem to be less protected than people who got two-dose Pfizer or Moderna options — and that most got that single-dose many months ago.
The FDA isn’t bound by the vote but its ultimate decision could help expand the nation’s booster campaign.
The government says all three US vaccines continue to offer strong protection against hospitalisation and death from Covid-19, and that the priority is getting first shots to the unvaccinated.
But there’s a growing push to shore up protection against breakthrough infections and the extra-contagious delta variant of the coronavirus.
Booster doses of Pfizer’s vaccine began last month for people at high risk of Covid-19, and the FDA advisory panel has recommended the same approach for Moderna recipients.
More than 38,000 Jamaicans have taken the Johnson and Johnson branded Covid-19 vaccine.