While distribution of Johnson and Johnson’s single-shot coronavirus vaccine hit an initial snag, the Biden Administration announced on Friday that the company will deliver 11 million doses of the vaccine next week.
According to NBC News, the company initially declared that it would deliver 20 million doses by the end of March, but after delivering 4 million doses after receiving FDA approval in late February, the company ran into some issues as it scaled up manufacturing of the vaccine. The Biden administration stepped in to help the company, striking a deal with rival drug manufacturer Merck to help produce the vaccine.
“We’ve done a lot to help J&J. We’re monitoring that very closely, and we anticipate a significant increase at the end of this month, which will enable them to hit at least 20 million doses,” White House Covid coordinator Jeffrey Zients told NBC News.
The Biden administration has announced its intention to administer 200 million doses of the vaccine within President Joe Biden’s first 100 days as president; a goal the administration believes it can meet if vaccinations continue at the current rate of 2.5 million shots per day. Zients told NBC News that currently 1 in 3 adults have received the vaccine (ya boy included, what-what). Given that Johnson and Johnson’s vaccine is only one shot, it requires less follow-up and will make it easier for vaccination clinics to efficiently administer the vaccine.
Johnson and Johnson isn’t the only company that has faced struggles with getting its vaccine to the American people, as British pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca garnered some controversy earlier this week after U.S. health officials said the company was using outdated data when announcing their vaccine efficacy.
The company still intends to seek emergency FDA approval to distribute the vaccine next month, which will likely help the Biden Administration reach its previously announced goal of providing enough vaccine doses for every American by May 1.