April 30, 2021 – 23:46
The White House said Friday that 100 million Americans are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19, nearly double the 55 million vaccinations that were administered a month ago.
White House coordinator for the COVID-19 pandemic Jeff Zients called the achievement of that number a “historic moment” at a news conference Friday.
“Hundreds of millions of Americans now have a sense of relief and peace of mind, knowing that after a long and difficult year, they are protected from the virus,” Mr Zients said.
Every American over the age of 16 now qualifies for the vaccine, and President Joe Biden has promised that there will be enough doses for every adult American by the end of May.
The situation in the United States is in stark contrast to that in India, where the coronavirus pandemic is spiraling out of control. According to India’s health ministry, only 2% of the country’s population has been fully vaccinated, based on data obtained as of Thursday. On Friday, the health ministry reported 386,452 new infections.
According to official figures, over 300,000 new cases per day have been reported in India for nine consecutive days, but Indian media report that some public health experts believe the current number of new infections could be at least five times higher. .
Aid from the United States and other countries arrived in India on Friday. US assistance includes oxygen supplies, rapid diagnostic tests and materials for vaccine production.
The second wave of coronavirus has overloaded India’s healthcare system, where some hospitals are already operating at full capacity and there is an acute lack of oxygen which has exacerbated the already serious condition. Many car parks and parking lots have been turned into makeshift crematoria that work day and night to burn lifeless bodies.
Indian public health experts have blamed the more contagious variants of the virus for its rapid spread and easing restrictions on large crowd gatherings that came into effect earlier this year when the pandemic was thought to have been brought under control.
Only the United States has more reported cases of Covid-19 infections than India. According to figures published by Johns Hopkins University, more than 32 million infections have been reported in the United States so far, while 18.3 million in India.
French President Emmanuel Macron announced on Friday that all French adults will qualify to get the vaccine starting June 15th. Currently, only people with chronic diseases can get the vaccine.
More than a quarter of British healthcare workers say they have reservations about the COVID-19 vaccine. Reasons for their reluctance included some conspiracy theories and the lack of people of color in clinical trials for vaccines.
Reuters news agency said Thursday that Pfizer has begun exporting doses of vaccines produced abroad to one of its factories in the United States. The first shipment was exported to Mexico.
Meanwhile, the head of Australia’s regulatory agency said on Thursday that there was no evidence that the AstraZeneca vaccine was responsible for the deaths of two people shortly after their immunization.
Two men in the state of New South Wales, including one in his 70s, died a few days after being vaccinated.
The AstraZeneca vaccine has encountered problems in the vaccination campaign worldwide. Many countries have suspended its use after initial reports of side effects such as blood clots and thrombosis in a number of people who had been vaccinated, including a small number of deaths./VOA