As demand for Covid-19 vaccinations falls across the country, unsold Johnson & Johnson vaccine doses are piling up on state shelves. This raised fears that hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of doses would go to waste due to a lack of a coordinated government plan to transfer them. The increase in doses is mainly due to the Food and Drug Administration’s directive in early April to halt the Johnson & Johnson vaccine’s distribution due to safety concerns.
According to state officials, enthusiasm for the one-dose shot waned following the 11-day delay. According to Dr. Marcus Plescia, medical director of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, citizens in other nations are eager to obtain the Johnson & Johnson vaccination. Plescia expressed concern among his colleagues that Johnson & Johnson vaccine doses, which are in high demand in underdeveloped countries, could be wasted if no national effort is launched.
Slavitt added, “Remember, those doses were ordered by states, delivered by states and should end up in people’s arms, and we are working aggressively through this month of action and other steps to try to get those doses into arms.” According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s vaccine data tracker, 21.4 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been supplied, with 11.1 million doses being delivered. Dr. Clay Marsh, the state’s Covid-19 response coordinator, estimates that 20,000 to 25,000 doses are nearing expiration.