Rhode Island Panel Approves Use of Johnson & Johnson Vaccine in State

The state has placed an initial order for more than 9,000 doses

The Rhode Island COVID-19 vaccine subcommittee on Wednesday unanimously approved the use of Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine in the state.

The vaccine was granted an emergency use authorization by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration last weekend, after an advisory panel to the FDA unanimously endorsed the vaccine.

The state has placed an initial order for more than 9,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, and the shipment is expected later this week, according to the state Department of Health.

The 19-member subcommittee includes multiple medical professionals as well as ethicists, nonprofit leaders, educators and faith leaders.

Gov. Daniel McKee, on his first full day on the job, joined the virtual meeting and reiterated his commitment to quickly getting teachers and school support staff vaccinated so more schools can safely open for in-person learning.

“We need to make sure that’s a top priority,” the Democrat said.

Almost 200,000 people in the state have received a first dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, while nearly 80,000 people have been fully vaccinated, the department said Wednesday.

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