- The first shipment of 4 million doses is on the way, though supplies are expected to be spotty at least through March.
J&J’s vaccine is single-shot and requires less fussy handling than the Pfizer and Moderna jabs, according to CNN. Efficacy differences:
- J&J: 66% protective against moderate-severe COVID-19 infections, CNN reports, and 85% effective against severe disease
- Pfizer and Moderna had: 95% and 94% efficacy in preventing symptomatic infection, respectively
But: It’s an “apples and oranges” comparison because the trials were conducted differently, writes Helen Branswell in STAT:
- Pfizer & Moderna tested for any symptomatic COVID infection; J&J tested for protection against moderate-severe illness
- Pfizer and Moderna vaccines were trialed before new variants emerged. The J&J trial came later; a South African trial branch involved people infected with the B.1.351 variant.
Key Concern: The difference in efficacies may make some people see J&J’s vax as “second class,” Sarah Christopherson of the National Women's Health Network told CNN. However, all 3 vaccines perform excellently at protecting people from serious illness—the most important measure by far.
Bottom Line: Americans are not likely to get a choice of vaccine—and they should take the one that is offered to them, top ID doc Anthony Fauci said yesterday on NBC’s Meet the Press.