Millions of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines are set to expire this month, and states are scrambling to use up their stockpiles or send them abroad

Nurse Elizabeth Johnson administers a COVID-19 vaccine to Melissa Mendez in Reading, Pennsylvania. Ben Hasty/MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle/Getty Images

  • States are racing to use up Johnson & Johnson vaccines set to expire later this month, per a number of stories.

  • Ohio, which has 200,000 doses set to expire, says it may well’t send pictures abroad or to different states.

  • Public opinion of the jab has soured after stories of blood clots and manufacturing issues.

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Millions of Johnson & Johnson vaccines are set to expire in June, and 1000’s may very well be wasted as a result of fewer and fewer Americans are getting vaccinated, in accordance to stories by The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times.

Some states have thought of transport extra doses to different states or even abroad, however mentioned they confronted authorized and logistical hurdles.

The J&J vaccine is less complicated to transport, retailer, and administer than different vaccines. Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine is the one single-dose vaccine approved within the US, and will also be saved in an everyday fridge for up to three months. But public opinion of the jab has soured, following stories that it might trigger blood clots in very uncommon instances, and {that a} manufacturing unit in Baltimore producing the vaccine ruined up to 15 million doses and failed to meet sanitation protocols.

Read extra: Experts explain why the mRNA tech that revolutionized COVID-19 vaccines could be the answer to incurable diseases, heart attacks, and even snake bites: ‘The possibilities are endless’

As the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) investigated the blood clot considerations in April, it advised states to pause use of Johnson & Johnson’s shot. This, mixed with the general decline in vaccinations within the US and the general public’s hesitancy in direction of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine, has left states with hundreds of thousands of doses due to expire this month – and few folks prepared to take them.

Most Americans do not get to select which vaccine they obtain, however some pharmacies solely provide sure manufacturers, so folks might select their pharmacy accordingly.

CDC data reveals that simply 53% of Johnson & Johnson vaccines delivered to states have been administered, in contrast to 83% for Moderna and 84% for Pfizer. Just over 10 million Johnson & Johnson are nonetheless ready to be given out, largely due to the decline in vaccination charges and the FDA-mandated pause.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine said Monday that the state had round 200,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine set to expire on June 23, whereas Dr. Jennifer Dillaha, Arkansas’ state epidemiologist, said on June 2 that it was pausing new vaccine orders as a result of it already had up to 60,000 doses of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine set to expire this month.

Dillaha advised 5 News that general demand for vaccines was dropping in Arkansas – however that the Johnson & Johnson shot was the least wanted.

Other states, together with Michigan and Philadelphia, have reported related issues – however they’ve struggled to shift extra doses elsewhere.

Pennsylvania’s Department of Health advised The Journal that it had labored with the CDC to strive to switch Chester County’s 50,000 expiring Johnson and Johnson doses to Oregon. The deal fell by way of when Oregon mentioned there wasn’t sufficient demand for the jab, officers advised The Journal.

Ohio said it was not legally ready to send the vaccine abroad or to different states, and mentioned it had been “aggressively” working with vaccine suppliers to use as many doses as potential earlier than they expire.

Nearly two-thirds of adults have obtained not less than one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, in accordance to information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). But, as extra folks get the shot, the speed of vaccination is dropping, falling from a peak of 4.3 million on April 1 to a present common of lower than 1 million a day.

“There is a very, very small fraction of doses that have been sent out to states that will ultimately not be used,” Andy Slavitt, a White House pandemic adviser, mentioned Tuesday, per The Times. He added that the FDA was trying into methods to prolong the vaccine’s shelf life.

Both states and corporations have been providing incentives to drive vaccination charges up, together with free doughnuts, entry in a $1 million lottery draw, and $100 saving bonds.

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