Europe’s drug regulator has recommended the EU authorize Johnson and Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine

EMA
The headquarters of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Niels Wenstedt/BSR Agency/Getty Images
  • The European Medicine Agency has recommended Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine for use in the EU.
  • The EMA previously recommended the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and AstraZeneca COVID vaccines.
  • The J&J vaccine, which requires just one shot, would help speed up Europe’s vaccine rollout.
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Europe’s medicine regulating agency has recommended the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use.

The European Medicine Agency announced Thursday Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine met safety and quality criteria for use for people 18-years-old and older in the European Union. The EMA said the vaccine led to a reduction of symptomatic COVID-19 cases in 67% of recipients in a 44,000-person study.

The EMA previously recommended the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and AstraZeneca COVID vaccines.

“With this latest positive opinion, authorities across the European Union will have another option to combat the pandemic and protect the lives and health of their citizens,” EMA executive director Emer Cooke said in a release.

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The European Commission will now decide on authorizing the vaccine to begin rolling it out.

The Johnson & Johnson doses, which can be stored in regular fridges and requires just one shot, would help speed up Europe’s vaccine rollout. Denmark and Norway paused the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine on Thursday after reports of blood clots in recipients.

But supply chain issues could delay the use of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine. Reuters reported the pharmaceutical firm recently told the EU it was “under stress” to meet their goal of delivering 55 million doses by the end of June due to issues with vaccine ingredient supplies.

This is a developing story.