Sinthia Hoque:-The officials announced on Friday that Health Canada has approved Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose COVID-19 vaccine.
Amongst other vaccines, Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose becomes the fourth official vaccine to get Health Canada’s approval, potentially enabling more people to be vaccinated in the coming months.
“Canada is the first major regulator to approve four vaccine’s”, said Dr. Supriya Sharma, Health Canada’s Chief Medical Advisor.
According to experts, Johnson & Johnson’s becoming the only single-dose available in Canada , is expected to help speed up immunity among population and require fewer appointments and medical staff.
It is approved for Canada for individuals aged 18 and above, and is effective in older adults.
“For the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, a large study of over 40,000 people, which included 20 per cent of 65 and over, showed efficacy was very similar in the younger and older group”, said Dr. Sharma
According Health Canada’s, Dr. Marc Berthiaume, the single-dose vaccine is expected to reduce pressure on vaccination clinics, as “protection lasts for several months”.
The shot is easy to ship and store and can be refrigerated between 2C and 8C for at least three months.
Canada has pre-ordered 10 million doses of the vaccine, which is expected to arrive by September and will also have the option to order up to 28 million more.
The first shipment is expected to arrive between April and June, said Procurement Minister, Anita Anand at a another news conference on Friday.
As the Janssen Pharmaceutical is owned by Johnson and Johnson, the shot may also be referred to as the Janssen vaccine.
The shot appears to fight well against the highly contagious B.1.351 variant, first identified in South Africa. After an earlier data suggested that the AstraZeneca provided “minimal protection” against the variant, Canada began to administrate unapproved vaccination to healthcare workers in February, as part of a study.
A new trial is currently under work to find out if two doses of the vaccine are better than one.