New Brunswick-based Johnson & Johnson has agreed with the U.S. Government and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, to offer its single-shot COVID-19 vaccine through the World Health Organization-backed COVAX Humanitarian Buffer that is focusing on providing shots to around 167 million displaced people around the world.
The first deliveries to the COVAX Humanitarian Buffer are anticipated to begin in the coming days.
“We believe our single-shot COVID-19 vaccine has a critical role to play in conflict zones and other humanitarian settings that can’t be reached by government vaccination campaigns, and we are proud to be part of this effort to protect the world’s most vulnerable people,” Dr. Paul Stoffels, vice chairman of the executive committee and chief scientific officer, said in a prepared statement. “From the beginning of the pandemic, Johnson & Johnson has recognized that no one is safe until everyone is safe, and has worked to develop and deliver a vaccine that can protect the health of people everywhere.”
The establishment of the COVAX Humanitarian Buffer is of critical importance to global health and ending the COVID-19 pandemic for everyone, everywhere.
Johnson & Johnson said it is committed to facilitating equitable global access to its COVID-19 vaccine, and believes it is critical to protect as many people as possible against hospitalization and death. It said it will provide its vaccine on a not-for-profit basis globally for emergency pandemic use, and is making available up to 900 million doses of its vaccine to the COVAX Facility and the African Union through 2022.
The company firmly believes that inequitable access to COVID-19 vaccines will only prolong the pandemic, and is strongly advocating that governments with available doses follow the example of the U.S., the U.K. and other countries, and immediately ramp up dose sharing, particularly through the COVAX facility.