US and Canada to buy Johnson & Johnson vaccine Biden: if there is enough in the country, then share it with other countries
(Washington) US President Biden pursues the “America First” principle in vaccine policy, continues to place orders with local vaccine manufacturers, and reiterated that he must first ensure that there are enough vaccines for Americans before helping other countries. Earlier, he also invoked the National Defense Production Act to prohibit US companies from exporting various vaccine raw materials.
Biden on Wednesday instructed the authorities to increase the purchase of a single-dose coronavirus vaccine developed by Johnson & Johnson, doubling the original 100 million doses to 200 million doses to ensure that the United States has enough vaccines to meet “unexpected challenges.”
At meetings with senior executives from Johnson & Johnson and Merck & Co, Biden emphasized the need to increase purchases. He said: “We need the greatest flexibility. We are always likely to encounter unexpected challenges. Many things can happen, and there may be changes. We have to plan ahead.”
He reiterated that the government will first ensure that there is enough vaccine supply for the people of the country to vaccinate, and then help other countries get the vaccine. “If there is more vaccine supply in the United States, we will share it with the rest of the world.”
Said that they are worried about the lack of long-lasting effects of the vaccine or the mutation of the virus to stock up.
The US government has previously paid more than US$1 billion (approximately S$1.3 billion) to purchase 100 million doses of coronavirus vaccine from Johnson & Johnson, and it is expected that 20 million doses will be available by the end of this month. The United States is currently using Pfizer and Modena’s coronavirus vaccines. Once Johnson & Johnson delivers, the United States will have three vaccines for use.
Pfizer and Modena have pledged to deliver a total of 220 million doses of vaccine to the United States by the end of this month, and agreed to deliver a total of 600 million doses by July. This means that with Johnson & Johnson vaccines, the doses of vaccines purchased by the United States far exceed actual needs.
Regarding this “hoarding” behavior, Biden government officials explained that this is because the authorities have not approved a vaccine suitable for children to vaccinate, and it is still unclear which vaccine is the most effective for children, so more stocks must be made. The authorities must also prepare in advance, in case the vaccine immunity is not long-lasting or the virus mutates, it may be necessary to increase the dose.
White House spokesperson Psaki responded: “We need a little more supply to prepare for emergencies.”
Nearly 530,000 people have died of coronary disease in the United States. Biden previously promised that the United States will receive enough vaccines by the end of May for all American adults to vaccinate. The White House issued instructions to increase Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine purchases to speed up the process of the vaccination plan to curb the spread of coronavirus.
For this reason, the Biden administration has brought together two competitors, Johnson & Johnson and Merck, to produce coronavirus vaccines. According to the agreement reached between the two parties earlier this month, Merck will assist in completing the final steps of vaccine production-filling and forming the finished vaccine. Johnson & Johnson promised to produce 1 billion doses of vaccines this year, and will continue to look for partners to speed up production.
However, the White House did not say whether it has exported any coronavirus vaccines produced in the United States. Modena previously stated that the vaccine plenary made in the United States will remain for domestic use; Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson declined to respond to whether they will export or plan to export vaccines produced in the United States.