On the heels of the Food and Drug Administration’s emergency use authorization of Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine, Stephen Parodi, MD, told CNN International that its rollout will provide a major boost to U.S. vaccination efforts.
“This new vaccine is a huge game changer,” said Dr. Parodi, associate executive director of The Permanente Medical Group (TPMG), which cares for Kaiser Permanente members in Northern California. Unlike the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine is a 1-dose shot that can be stored in a refrigerator instead of a freezer.
“It’s going to be much more mobile,” Dr. Parodi said. “We’re going to be able to get this into the communities in a much more ready and fast fashion.”
The new vaccine also “has minimal side effects, it prevents hospitalizations, and it prevents deaths,” said Dr. Parodi, who also serves as Kaiser Permanente’s national infectious disease leader. “That is really what we’ve been struggling with ”
Dr. Parodi added that 4 million doses of the vaccine are expected to be released in the United States. In anticipation, TPMG is ramping up its operations at hospitals, clinics, and mass vaccination sites to prepare for the increased allocation to Kaiser Permanente.
Watch the full CNN International interview below: