South Korea's expert panel says Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine safe, effective for approval

When granted a greenlight, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will be the third Covid-19 vaccine authorised in South Korea.
When granted a greenlight, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will be the third Covid-19 vaccine authorised in South Korea.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

SEOUL (REUTERS) - A panel of South Korean advisers recommended a coronavirus vaccine from Johnson & Johnson was safe and effective, the food and drug safety ministry said on Monday (March 29), moving the single-dose shot a step closer to receiving regulatory approval.

When granted a greenlight, the J&J vaccine will be the third Covid-19 vaccine authorised in South Korea, following ones from AstraZeneca and Pfizer/BioNTech, both of which require two doses.

South Korea has an agreement to get 6 million doses of the J&J vaccine and has said it will be ready for inoculation from the second quarter.

The final authorisation of the vaccine will be decided after two more expert committees hold meetings.

The country has so far administered 793,966 first doses of vaccines among medical workers and high-risk groups since the beginning of its vaccination campaign in February.