The U.S. reported on Saturday another daily record of new Covid vaccine doses administered, pushing the weekly average of new shots per day above 3 million, according to data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The public-health agency on Saturday reported 4.1 million new doses were given, the highest daily mark since the Food and Drug Administration cleared vaccines for emergency use late last year.
About 104.2 million U.S. residents, or 31% of the population, have received at least one vaccine dose, according to the CDC, while 59.9 million people, or 18% of the population, are fully vaccinated. Pfizer and Moderna‘s vaccines require two doses for full immunity protection; Johnson & Johnson‘s vaccine, which received limited clearance in late February, is a single-shot regime.
Three-quarters of U.S. residents who are age 65 and older have received at least one vaccine dose, CDC data shows, providing crucial protection against the disease to a vulnerable group of Americans. As of March 31, nearly 81% of the country’s Covid deaths have occurred in people age 65 and up.
The rise in daily vaccine doses administered comes as available supply increases and eligibility is expanded across the nation. In states such as Texas, Kansas and Ohio, all residents age 16 and older are now able to get the vaccine.
The vaccine milestone Saturday arrives against a somewhat mixed picture for coronavirus cases and deaths in the past week. The country’s seven-day average of new daily infections sits at 64,617, up 6% compared with a week ago, according to a CNBC analysis of Johns Hopkins University data. Cases are growing in 26 states, plus Washington D.C., CNBC’s analysis shows.
However, the U.S. weekly average of new deaths per day is down 12% to 847.
President Joe Biden has urged the country to continue remaining vigilant around coronavirus spread despite significant progress on the vaccine rollout. “Too many Americans are acting as if this fight is over,” Biden said Friday. “It is not.”
Also on Friday, the CDC said people who have been fully vaccinated against Covid can travel at “low risk to themselves,” while still stressing the need to wear a mask and maintain physical distance.
“We continue to encourage every American to get vaccinated as soon as it’s their turn, so we can begin to safely take steps back to our everyday lives,” CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said in a statement that accompanied the guidance change. “Vaccines can help us return to the things we love about life, so we encourage every American to get vaccinated as soon as they have the opportunity.”