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'It's easier to store, easier to administer': Ontario health expert confident J&J vaccine will be approved

Last Updated Mar 1, 2021 at 1:09 pm EDT

A top infectious disease expert is expressing a lot of optimism about the potential of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine being approved in Canada.

Doctor Isaac Bogoch tells 680 NEWS it could be a gamechanger in our vaccination efforts.

“It requires just conventional refrigeration and it’s a one-and-done shot,” Bogoch said. “Imagine how fast and how much easier you could vaccinate a population if you didn’t have to bring people back for a second dose. That’s a big deal.”

Bogoch is applauding Canada’s AstraZeneca approval that came on Friday saying any shot in our COVID-19 arsenal will help protect our population from the virus. Canada has pre-ordered 20 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, which was co-developed by researchers at the University of Oxford.

Health Canada officials say the decision on the J&J vaccine could come in the next few weeks after the U.S. and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently approved the shot.

“It’s easier to store and easier to administer,” Bogoch continued.

One dose is 85 percent protective against the most severe COVID-19 illness, according to a massive study that spanned three continents.

This vaccine does not require extremely cold storage facilities.

“This is really good news,” Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health, told The Associated Press Saturday. “The most important thing we can do right now is to get as many shots in as many arms as we can.”

Nearly 80 percent of the vaccines so far have been administered in just 10 countries, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). More than 210 countries and territories with 2.5 billion people hadn’t received a single shot as of last week.

With files from The Associated Press

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