due to the need for a vaccine against COVID-19 decrease across the country The amount of unused Johnson & Johnson vaccines has also risen along state shelves. This further worries government officials that the lack of a coordinated federal plan to redistribute means hundreds of thousands of people. If not millions quantity will be wasted
The increase in volume was largely a result of an order by the Food and Drug Administration in early April to halt distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine because of safety concerns. Government officials said the enthusiasm for the single injection had declined after an 11-day pause.
Government officials know that people in other countries are eager to get Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine, said Dr. Marcus Plessia, medical director of the Association of State and State Health Officers. say
Plescia explained the growing fear among his members that Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine doses, which are coveted in the developing world, are “incredible.” It may be wasted if no national effort is made.
“I think people feel ethical that you have other countries. without vaccines and in dire conditions,” Plessia said.
Chief Counsel Andy Slavitt said Tuesday at a briefing of the White House’s Covid-19 response team: “Small quantities of drugs exported to states” pose a risk of expiration.
“It’s not realistic to expect that not a single drug is wasted,” said Slavitt, who was responsible for getting unused drugs into the state’s arms.
“Remember that These quantities are state-mandated, delivered by the state, and should end up in people’s arms. And we are actively taking this month of action and other steps to try to bring those quantities into weapons,” he said.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s vaccine tracker indicates that 21.4 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been distributed, and more than half have been administered slightly, or 11.1 million.
West Virginia has 20,000 to 25,000 doses of the drug nearing its expiration date, said Dr. Clay Marsh, the state’s head of COVID-19 response.
“We are working with the CDC, the White House and the State Department to see if there is any benefit in sharing these vaccines with others in and outside the United States,” said Marsh, vice president and executive dean of health sciences at West Virginia University.
So far, no centralized effort has taken place.
“We knew there was a need for coordination and centralization. and even if we find these allies Navigating their supply chain And getting vaccinated to the right places/people is not easy,” Marsh said in a message.
Slavitt said Tuesday the FDA was considering how to extend the shelf life of the vaccine.
In states like Ohio The expiration date is only two weeks away. Mike DeWine’s government office points to an expiration date of 200,000 doses of the drug nearing its expiration date. To support unvaccinated Ohio residents to get vaccinated.
“For Ohio residents waiting to be vaccinated. I urge you to act now There are many opportunities across the state to get the vaccine. Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine is safe and effective and must be used only once,” DeWine said in a statement.
The statement said government officials believed they were not authorized to share or ship drugs abroad.
The governor’s office spokesman Dan Tierney told NBC News: “We want these ammunition to be armed — that’s our top priority.”
Tierney said the governor’s office has been in contact with the federal government about what is allowed to do with unused quantities. Redistribution efforts will require federal approval to be legal, Tierney said.
“The federal government controls where these vaccines go,” he said.
The only chance in Haiti
In other countries, such as Haiti, which has a population of 11 million, the number of cases is increasing and not being vaccinated.
Racha Yehia, who works in public health for Care2Communities in Cap-Haïtien says single-use Johnson & Johnson vaccines are optimal. She said that from her work She expects Haitians to become resistant to vaccines. And encouraging them to return for a second vaccination will be difficult.
“The second shot will be very difficult to convince people to go back and buy it. And it would save a lot of money if they could give it a one-time chance,” she said.
The government has just announced that it will accept 130,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine previously rejected. According to the Pan American Health Organization, PAHO spokesman Ashley Baldwin said the agency hopes to get such quantities to Haiti “soon” as soon as shipments arrive in the country. It declined to say when it would be.
In addition to the AstraZeneca vaccine, the country’s Ministry of Health, along with Partners in Health, an international NGO and local authorities They are working together to provide larger quantities for the country, said Elizabeth Campa, director of development for Partners in Health in Haiti at Global Health Equity University.
Campa said they were “treated more patients compared to last year”