Dr. Scott Gottlieb, the former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), told CBS’s “Face the Nation” Sunday that there is “more and more evidence” coronavirus vaccines are also “preventing transmission of infection.”
Most public health experts have advised the fully vaccinated to continue with public health measures like masking and social distancing because evidence didn’t yet exist that vaccines would prevent transmission as well as infection.
Gottlieb’s comments came during a discussion with anchor Margaret Brennan about the recent FDA emergency use approval of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, a one-dose vaccine that could significantly speed up vaccination rates in the U.S.
“I think this is a good vaccine,” Gottlieb told Brennan after stating that he would gladly take it. “They’ll ship about four million doses this week. The vaccine was very effective at preventing severe disease, 85% effective at preventing severe and critical disease.”
The former FDA chief went on to discuss the 74% effectiveness of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine at “preventing asymptomatic infection,” calling it a “suggestion that it is preventing transmission as well.”
“Which is what all of the vaccines are starting to demonstrate in the data that’s being accrued,” he continued. “There is more and more evidence that these vaccines are preventing transmission of infection, which makes them an even more important public health tool.” (RELATED: ‘It’s Possible’: Fauci Says Masks Could Still Be Around In 2022)
Gottlieb called the Johnson & Johnson data “quite strong.”