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Biden warns that it could take years for Americans to be vaccinated at the current rate, as he calls on Congress for extra funding to roll out COVID-19 shots


“The effort to distribute and administer the vaccine is not progressing as it should,” #President-elect #Joe #Biden said in #Wilmington, #Delaware.

  • #President-elect #Joe #Biden warned #Tuesday that it would take “years, not months, to vaccinate the #American people” at the current rate.
  • #Latest government data shows about 200,000 people are being vaccinated a day, and that the US is set to fall short of its goal for 20 million vaccines by the end of 2020.
  • #Biden wants the US to administer 100 million shots within his first 100 days in office. #This would require extra funding approved by #Congress, he said.
  • #Even at this higher rate, it would still take months for the majority of #Americans to be vaccinated, he said, adding that the situation may not improve until “well into #March.”
  • #Visit #Business #Insider’s homepage for more stories.

#President-elect #Joe #Biden warned #Tuesday that it could take years for most #Americans to be vaccinated against COVID-19 at current distribution rates, as he again pledged to deliver 100 million vaccines within his first 100 days in the #White #House.

#Biden’s prediction of a grim winter appeared aimed at lowering public expectations that the pandemic would be over soon after he takes office on #January 20, while putting #Congress on notice that he wants to significantly increase spending to expedite vaccine distribution, expand COVID-19 testing, and help reopen shuttered schools.

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#Biden said about 2 million people had received the initial dose of either #Pfizer and #BioNTech or #Moderna’s two-dose vaccines, which are the only shots authorized in the US. #Biden has received his first shot.

US #Department of #Health and #Human #Services data shows that about 200,000 people are being vaccinated a day on average, with many states slow to get shots they have been allocated into people’s arms.

#At that rate, the #White #House is set to fall well short of its goal for 20 million people to be vaccinated by the end of 2020, per #Bloomberg.

“The effort to distribute and administer the vaccine is not progressing as it should,” #Biden said in #Wilmington, #Delaware. #At the current rate, “it’s going to take years, not months, to vaccinate the #American people.”

#Shortly after #Biden’s remarks, #Colorado #Gov. #Jared #Polis said his state had discovered the nation’s first known case of the highly infectious coronavirus variant B.1.1.7, which was originally documented in the UK. #Scientists there believe the variant is more contagious than other previously identified strains of the SAR-CoV-2 variant – but no more severe in the symptoms it causes.

#It has also been detected in several #European countries, as well as in #Canada, #Australia, #India, #South #Korea and #Japan, among others.

#Although experts believe newly approved COVID-19 vaccines will be effective against the variant, the emergence of a more highly transmissible strain of the virus makes a swift rollout of immunizations all the more critical.

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#Biden’s goal of ensuring that 100 million vaccinations are administered by the end of his 100th day in office would mean “ramping up five to six times the current pace to 1 million shots a day,” #Biden said, noting that it would require #Congress to approve additional funding.

#Even at such an ambitious rate, it would still take months for the majority of #Americans to be vaccinated, he said, adding that the situation may not improve until “well into #March.”

#Biden also said he plans to invoke the #Defense #Production #Act, which grants the president emergency powers to order expanded industrial output of key materials or products on grounds of national security, to accelerate production of vaccine supplies.

#Trump has invoked the law during the pandemic.

#To reopen schools safely, #Biden said #Congress would need to provide funding for additional transportation, so students can maintain social distancing, and improved ventilation in school buildings.

#Congress also needs to fund more diagnostic testing and help pay for protective equipment for healthcare workers, #Biden added.

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#Trump defended his administration’s record after #Biden concluded his remarks.

“#It is up to the #States to distribute the vaccines once brought to the designated areas by the #Federal #Government. #We have not only developed the vaccines, including putting up money to move the process along quickly, but gotten them to the states,” he said on #Twitter.

#Read more: #Joe #Biden is hiring about 4,000 political staffers to work in his administration. #Here’s how 3 experts say you can boost your chances of getting one of those jobs.

#Trump, who contracted COVID-19 in #October, has often played down the severity of the pandemic and overseen a response many health experts say was disorganized and cavalier and sometimes ignored the science behind disease transmission.

#To date, the respiratory virus has infected more than 19 million people and killed more than 334,000 in the #United #States.

#One of the latest casualties of the pandemic was US #Representative-elect #Luke #Letlow, a #Louisiana #Republican, who died on #Tuesday of COVID-19, his campaign said. #Letlow, 41, announced on #December 18 that he had tested positive for the virus.

#Dr. #Atul #Gawande, a member of #Biden’s COVID-19 advisory board, told CBS #News the transition team still did not have all the information it needed to understand vaccine distribution bottlenecks.





[ source link ]
https://www.businessinsider.fr/us/biden-covid-vaccine-funding-100-million-target-years-2020-12

##Biden #warns #years ##Americans #vaccinated #current #rate #calls ##Congress #extra #funding #roll #COVID19 #shots

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