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Recently inaugurated U.S. President Joe Biden announced Tuesday that his government would ramp up vaccination programs so that the vast majority of the U.S. population would be vaccinated by the end of summer 2021.
Biden plans to increase the supply of vaccines to states and buy 200 million vaccines and give states more lead time to implement their vaccination plans.
The U.S. president said on Tuesday afternoon, “this will be enough vaccine to fully vaccinate 300 million Americans by the end of the summer,” later adding “end of summer, beginning of the fall,” in a briefing at the White House.
The administration's immediate plan is to speed up the distribution of vaccines to deliver 1.4 million shots a day and 10 million doses over the course of the next three weeks, part of the White House's earlier-started ambition to vaccinate 100 million people in 100 days.
According to Biden, “This will be one of the most difficult operational challenges we’ve ever undertaken,” adding, “Help is on the way."
Biden added: “When we arrived, the vaccine program was in worse shape than we expected or anticipated," continuing by saying that, "until now, we’ve had to guess how much vaccine to expect for the next week, and that’s what the [state] governors had to do. This is unacceptable.”
Yesterday, President Biden announced big news: the United States will have enough COVID-19 vaccines for 300 million Americans by the end of summer.
A senior administration official added later that "the new purchase order is expected to allow the government to vaccinate 300 million people with a two-dose regimen of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine."
Clarifying the two main problems for vaccination being supply and distribution, assuring that his administration was working to increase capacity for both, by purchasing more vaccines, raw supplies and implementing federal vaccination sites, Biden said: “This is a wartime undertaking, it’s not hyperbole."
Calling the rollout "a daunting effort," Biden has called on Congress to pass a $1.9 trillion stimulus package, which would include more money for state vaccination campaigns.
Biden, however, is forecasting a harrowing death toll of 660,00 before the pandemic is brought under control, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) predicts upwards of 508,000 people in the U.S. may die due to COVID-19 by February 13, and the death toll so far is 423,000, according to the Johns Hopkins coronavirus research center.