“What I’ve been saying to my family is, as soon as the J&J vaccine is authorized, if that’s what you can get, you should get it as soon as it’s your turn in line,” says Jha.
He points out that the 66% vs. 95% effectiveness isn’t the right comparison for several reasons. He notes that the Johnson & Johnson vaccine was tested in different settings — the U.S., several Latin American countries and South Africa, where some worrisome variants of the virus were first seen.
“So that 66% number really represents an amalgamation of a variety of different clinical trials. Moderna and Pfizer were not tested in those circumstances,” Jha tells All Things Considered. “And even if you just look at the U.S. data, the Johnson & Johnson number then starts getting much closer to the Moderna and Pfizer numbers.”
But all of that misses what Jha says is the most important point.
“What you care about is hospitalizations and deaths,” he says. “And Johnson & Johnson appears to be just as good as Moderna and Pfizer at preventing those.”