PONTIAC, Mich. – Oakland County announced on Wednesday that it has received 7,400 doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.
Officials said it’s 700 more doses than the county expected to receive.
“With the news that Merck is going to be joining with Johnson & Johnson to manufacture this one dose vaccine, this increased supply of vaccine will help accelerate the end to the pandemic,” said Oakland County Executive Dave Coulter. “We are making steady progress in vaccinating Oakland County residents with nearly one in five having received their first dose.”
The county said its health division will be working with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to determine the guidance for administering the vaccine.
The county health division will schedule the doses once it receives that guidance.
“I am confident in the effectiveness of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine,” Oakland County Health Division Medical Director Dr. Russell Faust said, mentioning that the vaccine is safe and effective. “All three COVID vaccines prevent death and severe illness, which is what most concerns us in public health.”
The state of Michigan is expecting to receive 82,700 doses of the vaccine this week, going to health departments and hospitals. Over the weekend, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine for an emergency use authorization.
President Joe Biden announced on Tuesday that Merck & Co. will help manufacture Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine. The two competitors are joining together to boost production. Merck is expected to dedicate two of its facilities to the effort.
On Wednesday, the state announced that it will expand its vaccine eligibility to residents 50 years of age and and older with preexisting conditions or a disability starting March 8. All Michiganders age 50 and up will become eligible on March 22.
Michigan COVID-19 vaccinations: How to find appointments, info on phases