Thousands of doses of new vaccine headed for South Dakota


SIOUX FALLS (AP) – South Dakota is expected to receive 7,000 doses this week of the recently-approved Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine.

It brings the state's allotment to just over 25,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine per week.

South Dakota Department of Health Secretary Kim Malsam-Rysdon says the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine is a great option for people that have trouble being able to schedule a second dose.

"Folks that maybe they are in another state for the winter and they’re coming home and just the logistics of the two-dose vaccine make it hard for some people and so we do expect there to be some excitement among people to get the one dose and just be done with it,” Malsam-Rysdon said.

The Food and Drug Administration on Saturday cleared the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. One dose is 85% protective against the most severe COVID-19 illness, in a massive study that spanned three continents.

This vaccine does not require extremely cold storage facilities. Dr. David Basel of Avera Medical says the storage differences will make a big impact, KSFY-TV reported.

“It’s a lot more shelf-stable so refrigerator stable so it doesn’t have to require near the special handling that some of the vaccines that we’ve had out before need so there’s a lot of advantages coming out with this vaccine,” said Dr. Basel.

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