Johnson & Johnson set to begin delivering Covid-19 vaccines to Europe

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Johnson & Johnson said Monday it would start delivering its single-shot Covid vaccine to Europe on April 19, giving the continent a boost as it struggles to speed up its vaccination drive.

The pharmaceutical giant’s jab was approved by European Union regulators in mid-March, following approval of vaccines made by Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca.

The 27-nation EU has signed a firm order for 200 million J&J doses and an option for 200 million more.

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As well as being the first that requires just a single injection rather than two, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is easier to store.

The EMA gave the green light after saying clinical trials involving volunteers in the United States, South Africa and South American countries found the J&J jab was 67 percent effective at preventing people from getting Covid.

Several European countries have enacted new restrictions to curb a surge of infections, as vaccination campaigns have been slower than in other countries such as the United States or Britain.

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(AFP)