The federal government will help launch a mass vaccination site at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center with LCMC Health, the New Orleans Department of Health and the state, according to a hospital spokesperson.
The site will aim to deliver hundreds and then thousands of coronavirus vaccines daily as supply increases. Johnson & Johnson’s one-dose vaccine will be distributed on-site once it is available.
An advisory committee to the Food and Drug Administration will vote this week on the recommendation for emergency use authorization for Johnson & Johnson, the third potential vaccine in the U.S. If licensed, the company plans to begin shipping vaccines immediately. , promising 20 million doses to Americans by the end of March, according to a statement.
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Louisiana received 90,000 doses of vaccines this week, but demand still outstrips supply. However, officials are hoping for a boon in the supply big enough in the coming weeks to support mass vaccinations. It is not yet clear when the site will open.
“We want to assure the community that when more vaccines become available, we will be ready to offer them in massive quantities,” said Gregory Feirn, executive director of LCMC.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency of the United States Department of Homeland Security will provide a grant of $ 4.1 million to fund the site.
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On-site vaccine administration will adhere to current Louisiana qualification groups: healthcare workers, residents and staff of nursing homes and long-term care communities, teachers, school staff, daycare workers, care providers home doctor, pregnant people, law enforcement, anyone 65 years or older. above and those 55 to 65 with certain health conditions.
When the offer increases, other groups will be added.
“It is vital that we intensify our vaccination efforts to ensure that all of our people can be protected from COVID-19, and we need the space to do so,” said Mayor LaToya Cantrell. “I am grateful to LCMC Health for stepping up the shared effort in partnership with the team at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center of New Orleans to implement plans to vaccinate our residents so that we can be a stronger and healthier city on the road to Recovery . “
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The news comes after representatives said the Smoothie King Center and the Superdome were unavailable as mass vaccination sites due to ongoing renovations.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is ideal for great efforts because it does not have the same cold storage requirements as the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines and is a single injection. Johnson & Johnson was 72% effective in preventing moderate and severe disease in a US clinical trial and 66% in a global trial. It was 100% effective in preventing death.
Emily Woodruff Covers Public Health for The Times-Picayune | The New Orleans Advocate as a member of the Report For America corps.