- According to the most recent count from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 5.3 million vaccines were distributed over the weekend.
- As vaccination rates rise and Covid infections fall, some states remove mask requirements and relax economic constraints.
- According to public health authorities, premature re-openings may result in another Covid outbreak as new varieties surface, undoing the gains made so far.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Over the weekend, the United States administered a record number of Covid-19 vaccinations, while public health experts urged state lawmakers to maintain social distancing initiatives to avert a new outbreak that could jeopardize progress against the virus.
According to the CDC’s latest count, 2.9 million vaccines were distributed on Saturday, a new high, and 2.4 million on Sunday, a new low. As more evidence becomes accessible to public health authorities, the figures can be revised.
According to the CDC, more than one in five people has received at least one vaccine injection, and just over one in ten has received two doses.
The Moderna and Pfizer vaccines require two doses, while the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which was newly accepted, only requires one.
On Sunday, White House coronavirus response coordinator Jeff Zients told NBC’s “Meet The Press” that the country is now delivering more than 2 million shots a day on average, up from 900,000 a day in the early days of the vaccine program.
Last week, President Joe Biden stated that the United States would have enough vaccine doses for every adult by the end of May, two months ahead of schedule.
Although progress has been made in the vaccinations, Zients cautioned that the country must now focus on mitigation steps. “We’re on the road, and we can’t afford to let our guard down,” Zients said.
“People must rise to President Trump’s masking threat. When it is their time, people must get the vaccine. We must continue on this course to defeat the pandemic.”
As cases of the coronavirus decrease and vaccine rates rise, Zients enters a chorus of public health officials urging the country to be vigilant.
Arizona, Texas, Alabama, South Carolina, California, and Mississippi also loosened sanctions to an extent last week. According to the governor, businesses in Arizona are no longer subject to ability restrictions, but they must also wear masks.
Texas has declared the restoration of full-capacity companies, but the mask requirement was repealed. After April 9, Alabama’s governor announced that the state’s mask requirement would be lifted.
South Carolina has lifted its mask requirement in government offices, but restaurants are still required to wear facial coverings.
Theme parks, water activities, and live concerts at stadiums in California will reopen on April 1 with limited capacity and mandatory masks.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo declared that restaurants outside of New York City would be allowed to reopen at 75 percent capacity.
Mississippi also confirmed that companies will run at maximum capacity last week and that the state’s mask requirement will be lifted.
Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves referred on Sunday to public health officials who said his decision to lift Covid constraints was hasty.
“Our strategy has been to safeguard both lives and livelihoods. In an interview with CNN’s “State of the Union,” Reeves said, “We need to keep our economy going so that people can get back to work.”
As the administration seeks to vaccinate the nation, White House chief medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci warned Americans to be alert and follow public health initiatives.
On CBS News’ “Face the Country,” Fauci said, “We do want to come back carefully and cautiously.” “But don’t flip the key back and forth because it’s very dangerous to get another surge,” Fauci said of states changing mitigation strategies.
In a similar vein, Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that the latest versions may lead to an increase in cases in the United States.
On Sunday, Osterholm clarified that the United States is now “in the eye of the storm.”
The frequency of the cases has been increasing and looks more contagious. According to Osterholm, variant, which was first detected in the United Kingdom, will continue to rise.
He went on to say that the version is responsible for around 40% of cases around the country.
According to a CNBC review of data from Johns Hopkins University, while new Covid infections are declining from the disastrous winter peak, they remain stubbornly elevated at more than 60,000 new cases each day on average. This is similar to the spike in the United States last year.
The number of deaths has declined since the catastrophic winter peak but remains tragically high. According to reports from Johns Hopkins, more than 1,700 people die every day from the infection.