With one more week to go before Memorial Day weekend, which marks the start of summer in the United States, data from Covid indicates vaccines are keeping infection rates low, even though restrictions continue to be lifted.
Daily new cases fell below 30,000 for the first time since June last year, a sign of progress in the vaccination campaign in the United States.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that cases, hospitalizations and deaths are all down, thanks to the increase in the number of Americas vaccinated. The country is moving closer to fully immunizing half of its adult population, with 48.4% of adults having received full doses. More than 161 million people in the country, or about 60% of the adult population, have received at least one dose.
One of the largest hospitals in San Francisco had no Covid patients for the first time since the start of the pandemic. Many states have started lifting their strict Covid restrictions. New York, Connecticut and New Jersey allowed businesses to open at full capacity on Wednesday, while California is expected to do the same on June 15. States like Washington, Oregon and Michigan have also announced relaxation of their restrictions.
“New York is coming back, and it’s a testament to the strength and courage of New Yorkers who came together, stood tough and fought to defeat this Covid beast,” said Andrew Cuomo, the governor. The state on Wednesday abandoned its mandate to mask people fully vaccinated.
Although the United States appears to have turned the corner, it faces a long journey to ensure that a significant majority of the population is vaccinated.
Last week, about 1.8 million people received a dose of the vaccine every day, half the number who were getting vaccinated in mid-April. Some states have started to dramatically reduce the number of vaccines they order as demand has plummeted.
Earlier this month, Joe Biden announced that his goal is to vaccinate 70% of American adults – about 240 million people – with at least one dose by July 4. That means 75 million Americans will need to receive their first dose of the vaccine by then. Polls have shown that up to a quarter of American adults said they do not plan to get the vaccine.
Incentives are offered to encourage people to get vaccinated. Four states have announced lottery prizes: In Ohio, five people will win $ 1 million each. First-dose vaccinations exploded in the state after the program was announced.
Oregon Governor Kate Brown, whose state also has a lottery incentive, said: “Getting the vaccine not only protects you from Covid-19, but also helps protect your loved ones. This brings us closer to unblocking restrictions during the pandemic. And in Oregon, that now gives you a chance to win $ 1 million. Sounds pretty good.
Many companies have unveiled promotions encouraging customers to get the vaccine. Krispy Kreme offers free donuts, and the Tinder and Hinge dating apps offer premium services for users who check their immunization status.