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COVID-19 vaccine in high demand in the United States, but limited supply

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Across the country, states are expanding vaccination criteria and opening up mass COVID-19 vaccination sites to an impatient population. But, as The New York Times reports, few states say they have enough vaccines to meet demand.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) COVID Data Tracker shows that 70,057,800 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in the United States and that 52,884,356 have been administered. This means that approximately 12% of the American population has received at least the first dose of a two-dose series of Moderna or Pfizer vaccine.

States rapidly use allocated vaccines

On average, 1.7 million Americans get vaccinated every day, and the federal government sends 11 million doses to states every week. Although this is a substantial increase since vaccines were first available in December, most governors say they are going through the allocated supply quickly.

Yesterday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said his state had used 90% of all available vaccines, after opening up the vaccination criteria to include people with chronic conditions, including obesity or high blood pressure. .

In California, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti closed a mass vaccination site at Dodger Stadium after supplies ran out over the weekend. Garcetti said the city received just 16,000 doses last week, which could be used in a single day.

Today, Garcetti tweeted that the city will have 58,000 doses this week, but most of them will be scheduled for second doses, not first doses.

San Francisco also had to temporarily shut down one of its high-volume vaccination centers over the weekend due to a lack of vaccines, for at least a week, while waiting for an additional supply of vaccines. The city’s health officials said they were ready to administer 10,000 doses a day, the amount they received in a week.

Today, Cuomo, head of the National Association of Governors (NGA), called for greater clarity from the Biden administration regarding the allocation and distribution of vaccines. In addition, the NGA calls on the federal government to allow states to control doses assigned to pharmacies.

“We need coordination between the federal government and the state government to know which pharmacies they are sending to,” Cuomo said today at a press conference.

“We don’t send to the same, the local government doesn’t send to the same pharmacies, because some pharmacies do a better job than others. Some pharmacies are already receiving a distribution. If the federal government sends to CVS, I do not send to CVS. “

Cases drop but deaths remain high

Demand for the vaccine comes as the 7-day average of daily new cases is now 90,416, down from a high of around 250,000 in early January, according to Johns Hopkins University. The drop is a welcome sign that post-vacation flare-ups are on the decline.

The United States reported 64,938 new cases of COVID-19 yesterday and 1,088 new deaths, and there are 67,023 COVID-19 patients in US hospitals, according to the COVID Tracking Project. In total, the country has followed 27,676,502 cases, including 486,106 deaths.

The CDC’s variant tracking, which is updated three times a week, now shows 1,173 cases of variant B117 (including 192 new cases) have been reported in 40 states. Seventeen cases of B1351, including four new, have been reported in 8 states and three cases of P1 have been reported in 2 states.

Yesterday, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, MD, MPH, said on “Face the Nation” that mitigation strategies, including mask wear and distance, are even more important as the variants become more. widespread. She warned governors now is not the time to lift mitigation strategies, including orders on masks and limiting social gatherings.

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