PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — In today’s Coronavirus Digital Discussion, WAVY’s Stephanie Harris spoke with Dr. Edward Oldfield from Eastern Virginia Medical School about the Johnson & Johnson single-dose COVID-19 vaccine, which was just approved over the weekend.
Virginia is set to receive 69,000 doses of the J&J vaccine to start. The FDA says the vaccine provides strong protection against the most severe symptoms of COVID-19 and experts want to emphasize it isn’t a “second-tier” vaccine.
Oldfield, an infectious diseases expert told viewers, “Take what you can get. All three of them are superb vaccines.”
Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine, he said, is 75% effective at preventing symptoms compared to 95% for Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccines. However, Oldfield said “the Johnson and Johnson shot was 100% effective against somebody getting hospitalized after 28 days.” It was also 100% effective at preventing death, he told WAVY.com.
Since the new vaccine also requires only refrigeration, it will help reach more people.
“So this will be particularly important for rural areas, for hard-to-reach populations where you can send people out give them the dose and they’re done,” he said.
Oldfield predicts that we will see most of the population vaccinated by June and we will start to see looser restrictions after that.
He cautions, however, that he believes people will need to show proof of their vaccination in order to be allowed to participate in large group activities such as sporting events and concerts as well as international travel. That’s why he also predicts “those that are hesitant are going to want it as we get further on.”
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BELOW: Watch the full Coronavirus Digital Discussion