U.S. administering average of 1.7 million vaccine doses per day
The seven-day average of coronavirus vaccines administered in the U.S. has reached 1.7 million per day, White House coronavirus coordinator Jeff Zients said at a Wednesday briefing.
Why it matters: That pace puts President Biden on course for meeting his goal of 100 million doses administered in his first 100 days in office, which would land on April 29. 54 million vaccine shots have been administered thus far, and 5% of Americans have received both doses.
- If the federal government — and states handling daily vaccine operations — can maintain this course of 1.7 million shots per day, 80% herd immunity could be reached by Nov. 17, according to a Washington Post analysis.
- Speeding up the rate of vaccinations is key in order to get life back to some semblance of normal and prevent potentially vaccine-resistant variants from becoming dominant in the U.S., per the Post.
Driving the news: Zients told governors Tuesday that beginning this week, the federal government's weekly allocation of vaccines to states will increase from 11 million doses to 13.5 million doses — a total increase of 57% since the start of the Biden administration.
- The administration is also doubling the weekly supply of vaccine doses to local pharmacies from 1 million to 2 million, and has activated 1,200 National Guard troops to serve as community vaccinators .
- Zients said that community centers, high school gyms, churches, and stadiums are serving as vaccination sites, with federally-run sites "that can give over 30,000 shots a week."
The bottom line: The U.S. is on track to have enough vaccine supply for 300 million Americans by the end of July, according to Zients.