Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, speaks during a White House press conference at the James Brady Press Briefing Room in the White House on January 21, 2021 in Washington, DC.
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The White House Chief Medical Advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said Sunday he would take the newly approved Johnson & Johnson Covid-1
The Food and Drug Administration approved J & J’s vaccine on Saturday and gave the United States a third tool to combat the pandemic after vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer. The company expects to deliver 20 million doses by the end of March.
“All three of them are really quite good, and people have to take the one that is most accessible to them,” Fauci said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
“If you go to a place and you have J&J and it’s the one available now, I would take it,” Fauci said. “I personally would do the same. I think people need to be vaccinated as quickly and as quickly as possible.”
The J&J vaccine is different from the others because it is a one-dose regimen and does not require patients to return to another dose. It can be stored at refrigerator temperatures for several months. The shot has shown 66% efficiency in general, 72% in the US and 57% in South Africa, which has seen a rapid spread of the B.1.351 variant.
Although the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines showed higher efficacy rates in two-dose trials versus J & J’s single-dose vaccine, Fauci insisted that the J&J shot was not a weaker vaccine and said experimental data should not be compared for the three shots because they were tested at different times.
“You now definitely have three very effective vaccines,” Fauci said. “There is no doubt about it.”
While the country is experiencing a decline in new cases of coronavirus and an improvement in the vaccination rate, Fauci warned states not to loosen pandemic restrictions too soon, a step that could lead to a further increase in infections.
Cases have dropped from 300,000 a day to about 70,000, a baseline that is still too high, Fauci said.
“We do not want to continue to prevent people from doing what they want to do. But let’s get down to a good level,” Fauci told CBS ‘”Face the Nation.” “Let’s get many, many more people vaccinated. And then you can withdraw on these types of public health measures.”
“But right now, when we go down and plateaus, is not the time to declare victory because we are not winning yet,” he said.