US FDA declares J&J doses safe after contamination scare

It announced it is granting emergency use authorisation for two batches of a component of the vaccine manufactured at a factory in Baltimore.

FILE: Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine. Picture: Volodymyr Kalyniuk/123rf.com

JOHANNESBURG - The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has on Friday announced steps to allow the Johnson and Johnson vaccine to be made available.

It announced it is granting emergency use authorisation for two batches of a component of the vaccine manufactured at a factory in Baltimore.

Those batches have been on temporary hold because of fears of contamination.

The FDA said it conducted a thorough review of facility records and was satisfied that the batches were suitable for use.

The agency has also ascertained that several other batches are not suitable for use.

The components are vital for South Africa's vaccine rollout, as they are the final ingredient needed to complete vaccine doses held up at the Aspen Plant in Gqeberha.

But it is not yet clear whether the any of the batches that have been cleared were earmarked for South Africa.

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