Fauci says he 'would have no hesitancy whatsoever' taking the newly authorized Johnson & Johnson vaccine
- Dr. Anthony Fauci on Saturday urged Americans to trust the FDA-approved Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
- The J&J vaccine got FDA authorisation on Saturday and has an efficacy rate of 66% at preventing Covid-19.
- "If I would go to a place where they had J&J, I would have no hesitancy whatsoever to take it," he said on NBC News' "Meet the Press."
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Dr. Anthony Fauci on Sunday said he trusts the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the latest to get authorized for emergency use by the Food and Drug Administration.
Johnson & Johnson is offering a single-dose vaccine that the company expects to distribute to 4 million Americans shortly. The FDA approved the vaccine on Saturday, marking the third one available in the United States.
The healthcare giant said it expects to vaccinate 20 million people by the end of March and 100 million by the end of June.
It is 66% at preventing moderate-to-severe COVID-19, according to the results of a 40,000 person trial.
Pfizer and Moderna - the two companies whose coronavirus vaccines preceded Johnson & Johnson's - have higher efficacy rates, at 94% and 95%, respectively.
Chuck Todd of NBC News' "Meet the Press" asked Fauci on Saturday to justify Johnson & Johnson's lower efficacy rate.
Fauci, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said the three vaccines "were not compared head to head."
"They were compared under different circumstances," he said. "All three of them are really quite good, and people should take the one that's most available to them."
"If you go to a place and you have J&J, and that's the one that's available now, I would take it," he continued. "I personally would do the same thing. I think people need to get vaccinated as quickly and as expeditiously as possible. And if I would go to a place where they had J&J, I would have no hesitancy whatsoever to take it."
Vaccines against the coronavirus have been rolling out in the United States since December 2020, after Pfizer became the first company to produce and receive FDA approval to distribute.
With the third vaccine on the market, the US is expected to have enough doses to immunize 300 million people.
More than 48 million people in the United States have already received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine.
It's been almost a year since the WHO declared the coronavirus a pandemic. Since then, more than 28 million people in the United States have contracted the virus, according to the latest data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. Of that, more than 500,000 Americans have died.