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Fireworks in New York City to celebrate the state reaching a 70% vaccination rate. Photo: Liao Pan/China News Service via Getty Images

The Biden administration acknowledged on Tuesday that it will likely miss its goal of vaccinating 70% of U.S. adults with at least one dose by July 4.

Why it matters: Despite falling short of the goal, the White House still believes most Americans will be safe to fully celebrate Independence Day, as COVID-19 cases and deaths remain at low levels throughout much of the country.

  • It's a vastly different message than this time last year, when public health officials and some governors were limiting large gatherings and pleading with the public to only host small, outdoor events for the holiday.
  • The Biden administration will be celebrating July 4 with over 1,000 members of the armed forces and front-line workers on the White House lawn.

Driving the news: During the White House COVID-19 task force meeting on Tuesday, officials stressed their estimates showing the U.S. is on track to hit the 70% target for those ages 27 and up, once the data for the July 4 holiday weekend is in.

  • Currently, 70% of Americans 30 and above have received at least one shot.
  • But daily vaccination rates have been slowing down since April, with key pockets in the South and unvaccinated young people causing projections to be off target by a few weeks.
  • 16 states, plus Washington, D.C., have vaccinated more than 70% of their adult population, President Biden's chief medical adviser Anthony Fauci said Tuesday. Four states have vaccinated less than 50% of their population.

What they're saying: “The reality is, many younger Americans have felt like COVID-19 is not something that impacts them and have been less eager to get the shot,” Jeff Zients, the head of the White House COVID-19 response team, said at a press briefing Tuesday.

Go deeper

Jun 9, 2021 - Health

Fauci sounds alarm over COVID-19 variant surging in U.K.

Anthony Fauci urged Americans Wednesday to get vaccinated to halt the spread of the highly transmissible COVID-19 variant first discovered in India, which currently accounts for 6% of infections in the U.S.

Why it matters: The United Kingdom has seen an explosion in new cases as a result of the variant, which is now the dominant strain and may be associated with increased disease severity.

May 5, 2021 - Health

CDC expects new COVID surge starting this month

Photo: Steph Chambers via Getty Images

Coronavirus cases across the U.S. are likely to peak this month before dropping by July, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Wednesday.

The state of play: America's rate of daily new COVID cases has declined in recent weeks, per data from Johns Hopkins University. Health officials are urging people to remain vigilant as variants spread, some of which are more contagious and deadly than the original strain of the virus.

Dec 31, 2020 - Health

U.S. set to end 2020 with just over 3 million vaccine doses administered

A healthcare worker hands Patrick Range, Sr., 88, a vaccination card after giving him the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami on Dec. 30. Photo: Marco Bello/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Americans received just over 3 million initial doses of coronavirus vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech in the 19 days following first shipments, according to a Bloomberg tally of government websites and CDC data.

Why it matters: It's far below Operation Warp Speed's goal of administering 20 million doses by the end of the year, raising concerns about how long it may be until enough people are vaccinated in the U.S. for life to return to normal.

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