Biden to Make Renewed Push to Attain the Unvaccinated


WASHINGTON – With the pace of U.S. coronavirus vaccination being relatively flat, President Biden on Tuesday called on employers to set up clinics in the workplace and offer workers paid time off to once again reach tens of millions of Americans who remain unvaccinated.

“Please get vaccinated now – it works, it’s free, it’s never been so easy,” Biden said in brief remarks. “It’s never been so important. Do it now for yourself and the people you care about – for your neighborhood, for your country. It sounds cheesy, but it’s a patriotic thing. “

Just two days after hosting a grand July 4th celebration at the White House declaring that “America is coming back together,” Mr Biden turns to a public health puzzle: Despite aggressive pressure from his administration, he has not met myself. The imposed goal of now at least partially vaccinating 70 percent of adults, and officials have already tried many techniques.

In his remarks, Mr. Biden noted another metric: By the end of the week, nearly 160 million Americans, not quite half the population, will be fully vaccinated. The worrying delta variant, which is rapidly spreading across the country, remains a problem in areas with lower vaccination rates. While there is still no good data on how all vaccines fare against Delta, several widely used vaccines, including that from Pfizer-BioNTech, are still effective against the Delta variant after two doses, research suggests.

However, providers averaged about 1.09 million doses per day on Friday, a 68 percent decrease from the peak of 3.38 million on April 13.

And beyond the problems with the vaccination campaign, the decline in the virus itself appears to have stalled across the country. After a sharp drop in virus cases, the average number of new daily cases appears to have leveled off across the country, staying near the lowest point since testing became widely available. Mr Biden underscored this general progress in his remarks on Tuesday, but outbreaks remain. For example, in some parts of Texas, Arkansas, and Missouri, the number of cases has risen sharply.

Mr. Biden used his remarks to outline five areas of concentration for his government, all the avenues it has already taken: targeted, community by community, door-to-door to vaccinate the remaining Americans; a new push to bring vaccines to general practitioners; Stepping up efforts to provide vaccines to pediatricians and other providers helping younger people so that adolescents aged 12-18 can get their vaccinations; expanded efforts in mobile clinics and workplace changes.

“The bottom line is that my government is doing everything we can to instigate a state, state and local response to help defeat the pandemic,” he said. “We need everyone to do their part.”

What else the administration can do is unclear. Public health officials know that the final leg of a vaccination campaign is the most arduous – a point Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, Mr Biden’s lead medical advisor for the pandemic, recently addressed in an interview.

“The last mile is always the hardest,” said Dr. Fauci and added: “We are actually on the last quarter mile.”