U.K. authorizes Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine
United Kingdom health regulators on Friday authorized the Johnson & Johnson vaccine for people 18 and older.
Why it matters: The J&J is the fourth vaccine to receive approval in the U.K., which has experienced one of the world's best vaccine rollouts. 58% of people in the U.K. have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while 36% are fully vaccinated, according to Bloomberg's tracker.
- Unlike the other shots that have been authorized — Pfizer-BioNTech, AstraZeneca and Moderna — the J&J vaccine only requires one dose.
- U.K. health regulators said the vaccine was found to be 67% effective in preventing infection and 85% effective in preventing serious cases and hospitalizations, AP notes.
The big picture: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned on Thursday that a contagious coronavirus variant first identified in India is beginning to spread rapidly.
- Public Health England on Thursday reported almost 7,000 cases of the variant, up from the over 3,500 cases reported the week prior, per Reuters.
- The rise in infections could threaten England's final stage of reopening — originally scheduled for June 21, Reuters reports.