J&J Vax Set For Widespread Use In Germany

Berlin:  Germany on Monday said it would administer the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine primarily to those aged 60 and above, but decided it could also be offered to younger people as long as their individual health risks had been considered.

The vaccine will therefore be given the same status as the AstraZeneca jab, which was last week cleared to be given to people younger than 60, as long as they had had a consultation with a doctor, reports dpa news agency.

Unlike the AstraZeneca vaccine, however, Johnson & Johnson requires only one dose, rather than two.

The roll-out of the Johnson & Johnson jab had been delayed in Germany and other countries in Europe due to concerns that, in highly rare circumstances, they can contribute to the formation of internal blood clots.

The decision to lift the age restriction was taken at a meeting of state and federal health ministers and announced by Health Minister Jens Spahn on Monday, following a recommendation from Germany’s top vaccine body.

The Ministers said that they took the cases of cervical vein thromboses in connection with the Johnson and Johnson vaccine very seriously, but pointed out that, as with the AstraZeneca vaccine, such cases were very rare.

The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) infectious disease authority on Monday reported 6,922 infections during the past 24 hours.

The country’s overall case tally and death rate currently stood at 3,530,887 and 84,796 deaths.