The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has voted to recommend Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use for individuals ages 18 and older in the United States.
The 12-0 vote with one recusal comes following official emergency use clearance by the Food and Drug Administration on Saturday. The ACIP made the recommendation after an emergency session was called to review data on the vaccine.
This Dec. 2, 2020 photo provided by Johnson & Johnson shows vials of the Janssen COVID-19 vaccine in the United States. (Johnson & Johnson via AP)
After CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky accepts the recommendation, shipment of vaccine doses to state health departments, pharmacies, federally qualified health centers and community vaccination centers across the country will begin immediately.
Johnson & Johnson's vaccine is the third for the United States, following previous emergency use approvals for vaccines manufactured by Pfizer and BioNTech and Moderna. Unlike the other two available vaccines, Johnson & Johnson's requires a single dose.
"For more than 130 years, Johnson & Johnson has come to the aid of people during times of crisis," Johnson & Johnson Chief Scientific Officer Paul Stoffels said in a statement. " We believe today’s recommendation from the CDC to begin use of our vaccine as part of the U.S. national immunization program will add a critical tool in the fight against COVID-19."
According to an analysis by the FDA, Johnson & Johnson's vaccine was about 67% effective in preventing moderate to severe cases within 14 days after dosing and 66% effective against severe to critical cases after 28 days. In addition, the vaccine was approximately 77% effective in preventing severe or critical COVID-19 occurring at least 14 days after vaccination and 85% effective in preventing severe or critical COVID-19 occurring at least 28 days after vaccination.
Meanwhile, the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines were 95% and 94.1% effective, respectively.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine was also found to be easier to store and has a longer shelf life at higher temperatures.
Johnson & Johnson will deliver nearly 4 million doses in its initial supply. However, the company expects to deliver enough single-shot vaccines by the end of March to vaccinate more than 20 million Americans. The company also plans to deliver 100 million single-shot vaccines to the U.S. during the first half of 2021.
The announcement comes as the United States has surpassed more than 28.5 million COVID-19 cases and 513,000 related deaths as of Sunday, according to the latest data from Johns Hopkins University. As of Sunday, the CDC reported over 75.2 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered.
You can find more updates on this story at FOXBusiness.com.