70% of US adults have at least 1 COVID vaccine dose

A month after the Jul 4 goal, 70% of adult Americans now have at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). But the milestone comes as the nation continues to battle surging case counts and hospitalizations.

The CDC COVID Data Tracker shows 400,674,965 COVID-19 vaccines have been delivered in the United States, and 346,924,345 have been administered. In total, 49.7% of Americans are fully vaccinated, while 57.8% have received at least one dose.

In a sign that more hesitant Americans may be getting vaccinated in the face of the growing threat from the Delta (B1617.2) variant, an ABC News analysis of CDC data from the past 3 weeks shows that every state has reported an increase in its average number of first doses administered.

In the last week alone, vaccination rates in Americans ages 12 to 17 have risen by 20%, and by more than 25% in adults.

Plea to get vaccinated

"We have a pandemic of the unvaccinated," said President Joe Biden today. "Ninety million who are eligible for vaccines still haven't gotten their first shot. We need to continue our aggressive efforts to vaccinate the unvaccinated."

The president continued to make his bid to unvaccinated Americans that vaccines were safe, life-saving, and far from a political issue. He also promised the United States would keep fighting the virus globally.

"It's in America's self-interest to do so," he said. "The virus knows no bounds."

As of today, Biden said the country has delivered 110 million doses of the vaccine to the 65 hardest-hit countries in the world, and would continue to deliver vaccines through the year.

"We have to demonstrate we can control this virus at home, vaccinate America, and help vaccinate the world," Biden said.

Louisiana reinstates mask mandate

With Louisiana now leading the nation in new infections per capita, Gov. John Bel Edwards yesterday announced the temporary reinstatement of a statewide mask mandate until at least Sep 1.  Edwards had lifted a mandate on Apr 28, but the state is now averaging more than 4,600 new cases per day, an increase of more than 200% in the past 2 weeks.

"I am reinstating Louisiana's statewide mask mandate indoors, including in schools to protect our children who are too young to be vaccinated and our teachers and staff," Edwards said. "This decision is not one I take lightly, but as the fourth surge of COVID-19 is upon us, we know that mask wearing when you are in public is one way to greatly lower your risk of spreading or catching COVID."

The head of Louisiana's largest hospital said yesterday that the hospital's intensive care unit is stretched to its limit with COVID-19 patients, CNN reports.

Proof of vaccination indoors in New York

One day after he said he would not reinstate mask mandates, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced indoor patrons of New York City’s restaurants, gyms and performances, will be required to show proof of at least one dose of vaccine.

Workers at indoor venues will also be required to provide proof of vaccination. According to the New York Times, the program will start Aug 16 and will be enforced beginning Sep 13, the same day public schools in the city reopen.

New York is the first major city to announce vaccination requirements.

Other US developments

  • The United States reported 127,976 new COVID-19 cases yesterday and 451 new deaths, according to the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 tracker. Total US cases have now reached 35,189,465, including 614,120 deaths.

  • McDonald's joins Target, Walgreens, and Kroger in requiring employees and customers to wear masks in high-transmission areas, according to USA Today.

  • A federal appeals court yesterday upheld Indiana University's COVID vaccine mandate.

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