10 things you need to know today: February 28, 2021

FDA grants emergency use authorization for Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, Trump to return to spotlight with CPAC speech, and more

Food and Drug Administration.
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1. FDA grants emergency use authorization for Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine

The Food and Drug Administration on Saturday authorized Johnson & Johnson's single-dose COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use, which means there will soon be three effective shots available for Americans. The Johnson & Johnson candidate registered a 72 percent efficacy rate in the U.S. clinical trial. That falls short of the roughly 95 percent rates seen in the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna trials, but experts are still very pleased with Johnson & Johnson's results, especially since it also showed 85 percent efficacy against severe COVID-19 infections, and 100 percent efficacy against hospitalizations and deaths, suggesting it will be a crucial tool in the fight to end the pandemic. Johnson & Johnson has pledged to provide the U.S. with 100 million doses by June, but four million doses should be ready to go as soon as possible now that the FDA has signed off, with another 16 million available by the end of the March.

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Tim O'Donnell

Tim is a staff writer at The Week and has contributed to Bedford and Bowery and The New York Transatlantic. He is a graduate of Occidental College and NYU's journalism school. Tim enjoys writing about baseball, Europe, and extinct megafauna. He lives in New York City.