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Photo: Jonas Güttler/Picture Alliance via Getty Images

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.

Go deeper: Former Boris Johnson aide gives scathing testimony on U.K.'s early COVID response

Go deeper

Updated 43 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Vaccines: Mix-and-matching gains momentum — Boosters overtake first doses in U.S. — Pfizer to vaccinate Brazilian cityPanel endorses J&J booster.
  2. Health: Unvaccinated 11x more likely to die from COVID — 5x more police officers died from COVID than guns — New cases down
  3. Politics: Over 30 states limited public health powers — Pope Francis calls on companies to release COVID vaccine patents — Melbourne, "world's most locked-down city," to lift stay-at-home orders.
  4. Education: Education secretary reveals limits to Biden’s mask push on states — LA extends deadline for school employee vaccinations — Parent sues Wisconsin school district after child tests positive.
  5. Variant tracker: Where different strains are spreading.
Sep 1, 2021 - Health

Texas school temporarily closes after two teachers die from COVID-19 in a week

American and Texas state flag. Photo: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A school in Texas closed for the rest of the week on Tuesday after two teachers died from COVID-19 within a week, the Waco Tribune-Herald reports.

State of play: The campus at Connally Junior High School won't open until after Labor Day for deep sanitation, after sixth-grade social studies teacher Natalia Chansler died on Aug. 28, having notified the school three days earlier that she tested positive for COVID-19.

Sep 2, 2021 - Health

Fauci: Mu COVID variant not an "immediate threat" to U.S.

Anthony Fauci. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

NIAID director Anthony Fauci said at a press briefing Thursday that the coronavirus variant Mu, which the World Health Organization is now tracking, does not pose an immediate threat to the U.S.

Driving the news: WHO added the Mu strain, first detected in Colombia in January, to its "Variants of Interest" list Monday, warning that early data suggest it may be more resistant to protection from prior infection or vaccination.