Earlier in the year, President Joe Biden expressed his hopes of having 70% of all American citizens over the age of 18 at least halfway vaccinated before the Fourth of July, with the goal of having a semi-normal summer celebration. So far, we’re making decent progress on that milestone; around half of the adult population of the US have received at least one shot of Pfizer or Moderna’s vaccines, while around 40% have received two shots of Pfizer or Moderna or one shot of Johnson & Johnson. The CDC is reporting an average of 1.2 million shots administered a day, and COVID cases are down from around 60,000 weekly to around 17,000 weekly. COVID-related deaths are also on the decline, with the most recent statistics showing just 589 in the US.
In the effort to reach the July 4th vaccination goal, 12 US states have come out ahead of the others, having already reached the goal of having 70% of adults partially vaccinated. The states in question are California, Maryland, Vermont, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine, New Jersey, Rhode Island, New Mexico, Pennsylvania and New Hampshire.
Much of the South has lower vaccination rates than the rest of the country. Fewer than half of all adults have received at least one shot in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi. Wyoming is also lagging. https://t.co/S41Ko5ufSL pic.twitter.com/h3qaQepFdy
— The New York Times (@nytimes) June 3, 2021
Unfortunately, a large number of states, especially in the southern US, are lagging far behind the northeast and west. Less than half of all adults in Mississippi, Alabama, and Louisiana have received at least one shot, while states like Oklahoma and Wyoming aren’t faring much better. Medical professionals have expressed concerns that these states could become COVID hot zones if those numbers don’t increase soon; lower vaccination rates means less immunity, and less immunity means more rapid spread from both carriers and the visibly ill. This could be made worse as other states with higher vaccination rates reopen and interstate travel resumes.
By present estimates, around 30 US states may just barely miss the July 4th goal, while several in particular may not even reach it by the end of the year.