Johnson & Johnson single dose Covid-19 vaccine authorised for UK use

28 May 2021, 12:46 | Updated: 28 May 2021, 16:56

The Janssen jab has been authorised for use in the UK
The Janssen jab has been authorised for use in the UK. Picture: PA

By Asher McShane

Janssen’s single-dose Covid-19 vaccine has been authorised for use by the UK medicines regulator.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said the Janssen jab met its safety, quality and effectiveness standards.

The single-dose vaccine created by Janssen, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, was shown to be 67 per cent effective overall in preventing COVID-19 infection and 85% effective in preventing severe disease or hospitalisation.

The UK has secured 20m doses of the jab which will be made available later this year.

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Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: "This is a further boost to the UK's hugely successful vaccination programme, which has already saved over 13,000 lives, and means that we now have four safe and effective vaccines approved to help protect people from this awful virus.

"As Janssen is a single-dose vaccine, it will play an important role in the months to come as we redouble our efforts to encourage everyone to get their jabs and potentially begin a booster programme later this year."

A Janssen spokesperson confirmed the pharmaceutical giant's study into the effectiveness of two doses will continue

Professor Jonathan Van-Tam has previously said the Johnson & Johnson jab could be used for hard-to-reach groups of people, where recalling them for a second jab is not always successful.

The MHRA is thought to have held back from early approval of the vaccine after concerns were raised in the US about a link to extremely rare blood clots.

The clots are similar to those seen in a very small proportion of people having the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab.

In April, the European Medicines Agency said a warning about unusual blood clots with low blood platelet count should be added to the product information for the vaccine.

This followed eight cases of blood clots in more than seven million people vaccinated in the US.

Johnson & Johnson has said the vaccine works across multiple variants of coronavirus.

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