But the math behind Biden’s pledge that the U.S. will have enough supply to vaccinate roughly 260 million by the end of May depends a great deal on new, more aggressive timelines from Johnson & Johnson. A closer look at administration and industry statements also suggests officials know this. Even if J&J misses the goals stated by it and the administration, it is likely the supply would hit this 260 million figure…
A Biden administration official told STAT that J&J did tell the administration the timeline is reasonable, in part because of other steps the administration took. The administration is using the Defense Production Act to help the company obtain needed materials, such as single-use bags for the vaccine. It has helped locate teams of experts who can be on call at factories to quickly troubleshoot any manufacturing problems. Biden said that he also pushed J&J to move to a 24/7 production schedule.
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All of those steps should move up the timeline, whether or not the 100 million doses arrive by May 31 or some come straggling in in June.