President Donald Trump has blamed states for the slow adoption of COVID-19 vaccines when he praised his administration's "successful" distribution of doses in the face of growing backlash to the disastrous program.
Trump appeared to be responding to mounting criticism of the vaccine's launch on Friday after new data showed that only a quarter of the shots distributed to states have been administered since early December.
By New Years Day, 3.17 million doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines had been administered. That's only 25 percent of the 12.4 million doses that have been released to states, according to an analysis by Bloomberg.
However, Trump has defended his administration's efforts, stating that it is states that are slow to move in vaccinating the population.
“Some states vaccinate recipients very slowly despite the successful and very extensive distribution of vaccines by the federal government. You will do it! & # 39; Said Trump on Twitter.
President Trump on Friday defended his administration's "successful" distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, blaming states for the slow adoption after Senator Mitt Romney urged the federal government to develop a comprehensive plan for it
The tweet appeared to be in response to Senator Mitt Romney and President-elect Joe Biden, who both spoke harshly about the clumsy efforts to get vaccines out hours earlier.
In an emotional statement released Friday, Romney, a Republican but frequent Trump critic, warned that the delays would be "fatal" unless the government urgently adopts new strategies to boost vaccination efforts.
"The fact that no comprehensive vaccination plans were developed at the federal level and sent as models to the federal states is as incomprehensible as it is inexcusable," said Romney in a statement that may have been addressed to the incoming Biden administration as well as the outgoing Trump administration.
"It was unrealistic to assume that health care workers already overloaded with Covid Care could embark on a massive vaccination program," said Romney.
The Senator also highlighted the fact that the program is "miserably behind" while targeting only frontline workers and long-term care residents – the "two easiest populations to vaccinate".
He called on the government to "involve any retired or active medical professional not currently involved in the provision of care into a crash program of government-run vaccination centers across the country.
"These could be vets, combat physicians and corpsmen, medical students, rescue workers, first responders and many others who could easily be trained to administer vaccines," he suggested.
Romney also proposed a scheme to "schedule vaccinations according to a person's priority category and date of birth: for example, people in Group A with a first birthday in January would be assigned a specific day to get their vaccination."
Regarding his experience overseeing the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics, Romney also included what might be considered a pitch for the Biden administration to offer his own assistance, saying, "I have experience organizing one major logistical event, "but added humbly that it was" nothing of the order of what is required today. "
As of Friday, West Virginia still had the highest percentage of its population vaccinated, followed by South Dakota and Maine. Kansas remains the furthest behind the vaccinated population. Only 0.42% of all residents received the sting
A table shows the vaccine doses received and administered and the percentage of shots used for each condition. Maine has now given out the highest percentage of its available vaccine, with more than 50% of the doses given
A senior Trump administration official had previously reported to the CNN correspondent Kristen Holmes While Dr. Anthony Fauci recently said officials are considering releasing 20 million doses that will be held in reserve for the necessary booster vaccinations, federal officials currently do not see it as a viable option.
The move was a rejection of the strategy in the UK where cans are shipped as soon as they are made and rely on future production to meet booster vaccination needs.
Critics of the UK strategy have argued that there is a risk of wasting millions of initial doses if the vital boosters are not available in a timely manner, pointing out that US states already have far more doses than they can in quickly, at least for now get the arms. However, proponents of the UK strategy argue that it will double the speed of vaccinations.
The total number of Americans infected by the pandemic has exceeded 20 million since March, and coronavirus hospitalizations hit an all-time high for the fourth consecutive year on New Year's Eve. Almost 125,400 people were hospitalized.
According to Johns Hopkins, Thursday's daily deaths remained staggering at 3,419 deaths after two straight record days, with over 3,700 daily deaths on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Biden took a look at the oversight of the Trump administration in a tweet on Friday and wrote, "Let me be clear, the Biden-Harris administration will go to great lengths to ensure that people are vaccinated."
Biden has vowed to invoke the Defense Production Act and ensure that 100 million vaccines are administered in his first 100 days in office, though he has given few specific details on how this will be achieved.
Even if the slow rollout doesn't give most people an opportunity to get the vaccine for the time being, Dr. Anthony Fauci that it is "entirely possible" for COVID-19 vaccines to become mandatory for going to school or traveling outside the country.
“I am not sure whether this will be mandatory from the point of view of the central government, as is the case with mandates from the federal government. But there will be individual institutions that I am sure they will commission, ”Biden's chief doctor Fauci told Newsweek.
“A city-wide school system might require it in some cities but not in other cities. And that is what I mean by the fact that things are not done centrally but locally, ”he said.
When asked if the US government could issue a "vaccination pass" to authorize travel abroad, as Israel did, Fauci replied, "Everything is on the table. Of course, anything is possible."
Meanwhile, Florida's Agriculture Commissioner this week urged Governor Ron DeSantis to use the National Guard to support the vaccination campaign and said in a letter to the Republican governor that the effort so far has been "very chaotic."
President-elect Joe Biden took a look at the oversight of the Trump administration in a tweet on Friday and wrote, "Let me be clear, the Biden-Harris administration will go to great lengths to ensure that people are vaccinated . "
Senator Mitt Romney, a Republican but frequent critic of President Donald Trump, issued a statement Friday calling on the U.S. government to immediately involve veterinarians, combat physicians and others in a dramatic proposal to encourage vaccination
Even if the slow rollout doesn't give most people an opportunity to get the vaccine for the time being, Dr. Anthony Fauci that it is "entirely possible" for COVID-19 vaccines to become mandatory for going to school or traveling outside the country
Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, Florida's only nationally elected Democrat, said in the letter on Wednesday that there was a lack of "clear direction" for vaccination procedures for health workers.
"Instead of efficient, centralized sales management by the state of Florida, sales were left to the county hospitals and health departments," Fried wrote. "While you characterize this as 'cutting out the middleman', vulnerable residents are left with no responses or clear instructions from overwhelmed local authorities on when, where and how to get the vaccine."
The Republican Party of State hit back in a statement, saying: “It is good to see Commissioner Nikki Fried taking the time to post an ill-informed, irresponsible letter on social media in which politics prevails Support for interested Floridians has in the vaccine. & # 39;
"Commissioner Fried's suggestion that the governor is not properly deploying the Florida National Guard is ludicrous," the statement added.
In fact, weeks ago the governor mobilized the Florida National Guard to form strike teams with the Florida Department of Health to begin vaccinating residents of long-term care facilities. This makes Florida the first state in the nation to begin vaccinating long-term care residents. & # 39;
Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, Florida's only nationally elected Democrat, said in the letter on Wednesday that there was a lack of "clear direction" for vaccination procedures for health workers and called for support from the National Guard
In Fort Myers, Florida, seniors camped overnight on Wednesday waiting in line for vaccines after Governor Ron DeSantis opened vaccination to all over 65s based on availability
Cape Coral, Florida residents wait in line to receive a COVID-19 vaccine on the first day of vaccination in town on Wednesday morning. Florida offers vaccines for high-risk health care workers on the front lines as well as those 65 and over
Florida has given only 176,729 of the 783,600 doses it has received to date, or 22.6 percent, as of December 30, according to CDC data.
The state, which has opened vaccination to people over 65 based on availability, has seen chaotic scenes with elderly residents arguing outside pharmacies about cutting lines and banding together to wait for the shots to be shot overnight.
According to a spokesman for the National Guard Bureau, the National Guard is currently deployed by governors in at least 26 states to provide some sort of aid to the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines.
It is unclear whether any state will use medically trained guardsmen to deliver the shocks. Most rely on the guard for shipping and logistics help.
According to the new data, Maine is now the leader in vaccine delivery efficiency. The Pine Tree state has given 51.1 percent of the doses the state received, a higher ratio than any other state, according to Bloomberg.
Washington DC, South Dakota, Connecticut, and Montana follow Maine as the next most efficient states.
West Virginia, one of the states using the National Guard to introduce vaccines, has vaccinated the highest percentage of its total population. 2.5 percent of all residents received a shot.
The mountain state is also number five in terms of efficiency, having given 43.4 percent of the doses shipped to the state to date.
Record producer Emilio Estefan, 67, received a Pfizer BioNtech COVID-19 vaccine from Nadia Johnson, RN of the Jackson Health System on Wednesday at the Christine E. Lynn Rehabilitation Center at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida
On the flip side, Kansas, where only 10.6 percent of the doses dispensed to the state were administered, and Georgia (16.4 percent) and Oregon (18.8 percent) are among the worst performing states.
New York City has only administered 88,410 doses to date, which is 25.4 percent of the doses already delivered to the city.
California, the new epicenter of the pandemic, has only administered 335,983 doses, which is 22.8 percent of the 1,476,425 doses the state received.
The failures in introducing vaccines have been attributed to a number of factors, including a lack of federal oversight, chaos in distribution, "bright" governors setting tortuous priorities for initial distribution, and the simple lack of staff to administer puffs in overburdened health systems.
Why the vaccine rollout has been so slow:
- Shipping delays caused chaos in the first few weeks, a mistake for which General Gustave Perna apologized
- Overcrowded hospitals struggled to find enough staff to manage the shots
- Some governors have placed increasingly complex restrictions on who gets the bumps
- Local and state officials are complaining that their public health departments are underfunded
- Some health care workers have rejected the vaccine, with a shocking 50% drop in some areas
- The cold storage requirements create logistical hurdles and narrow windows for vaccine administration
Federal public health officials, including Fauci and Surgeon General Jerome Adams, have blamed ill-funded state and local health departments for the sluggish adoption of vaccines.
"We would have liked it to go smoothly and have 20 million doses given to people today," said Fauci Today's show on Thursday. “Obviously it didn't happen and that's disappointing. Hopefully when you get into January we will get to where we want to be. & # 39;
When asked if the federal government should take over the process of administering vaccines that is now administered at the state level, Fauci replied, “Instead of stepping in and taking over, I think it would be better to work with them and give them more resources. & # 39;
The federal government has said it will withhold a second reserve dose as well as a safety stock for every dose sent, bringing the total number of vaccine doses closer to 40 million.
This plan has generated criticism, and some have urged the government to release all available cans and rely on new production to meet demand for the second cans required.
The Pfizer vaccine needs a booster dose after 21 days to be effective, and the Moderna scion after 28 days. If the required boosters are not supplied, millions of doses can effectively be wasted.
On Thursday, Fauci said that distributing the initial vaccine doses to more people is "being considered".
"I still think if you do it right you can do a single dose, reserve doses for the second dose and still get the job done," he said on the Today Show, "but there is a lot of debate about whether or not to do it or not." I want to spread primary vaccination by vaccinating more people in the first round. & # 39;
Others point out that if states were unable to quickly dispense the doses already available, it would make little difference to flood distribution channels with another 20 million doses instead of holding them in reserve for booster shots.
Up to 60% of US health workers refuse to receive COVID vaccines for fear of side effects
Thousands of US health care workers and frontline workers are refusing to get COVID-19 vaccines as the introduction of the gunshots continues to stutter in America.
Up to half of healthcare workers in a California county and Texas hospital say they won't get the shot. Sixty percent of nursing home workers in Ohio turn down the sting, and 40 percent of those on the front lines in Los Angeles won't get it, surveys show, too.
Respondents in a number of surveys say they fear dangerous side effects. Healthcare forum posters claim they feel like guinea pigs, and experts blame misinformation.
Although life-threatening side effects are rare, examples of this occurred in the early days of the vaccine's introduction among two Alaskan health care workers, one of whom had no history of allergies and who had anaphylactic shock minutes after the first dose of Pfizer vaccine .
In addition, it has become increasingly clear that a large number of healthcare workers actually oppose vaccination.
In Southern California's Riverside County, a shocking 50 percent of healthcare workers have turned down the vaccine, and public health officials have been trying to figure out how to distribute the unused doses, according to the Los Angeles Times.
A recent survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 29 percent of healthcare workers were "vaccine reluctant," a number slightly higher than the general population (27 percent).
The survey found that the main reasons for not wanting to be vaccinated were fears of side effects, lack of trust in the government to ensure the safety of vaccines, concerns about the role of politics in vaccine development, and a belief that the dangers of COVID-19 were exaggerated.
Although clinical studies have shown Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to be safe and effective, many healthcare workers appear to be skeptical of the speed at which they are being brought to market, which has been unprecedented.
Meanwhile, some governors have been criticized for making complicated demands on recipients of the first rounds of vaccination.
States ultimately control distribution, but the CDC recommended that frontline health workers and nursing home residents be given priority for the first round.
Following this, the CDC recommended that priority should be given to key people on the front lines and those over the age of 75.
This week, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo was criticized for giving drug addicts priority over rehab over older people in the general population.
During the Cuomo press conference on Monday, the governor said that "priority populations" would be shot and that as more vaccines became available, the population would expand and that residents of "OASAS" – the state's addiction service and support office – would would do next in line to get the push.
& # 39; These are community bodies. Congregational institutions are problematic. Lots of people are concentrated there, ”said Cuomo.
In addition to the concern, millions of cans that have already been shipped will expire next month. Phizer's vaccine only lasts for 30 days in the freezer it is distributed in and can also be used for on-site storage.
While ultra-low temperature freezers allow the vaccine to last up to six months, shipments of the specialized freezers have been severely curtailed as hospitals and pharmacies rush to track down the limited supplies.
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine said Thursday that 60% of nursing home workers oppose the vaccine. According to the Los Angeles Times, up to 40% of healthcare workers in Los Angeles and 50% in Riverside County refuse to be shot
A health care worker reacts when she receives the COVID-19 vaccine at Lake-Sumter State College in Leesburg, Florida on New Years Day. Long cars lingered on site as Lake County's vaccines are currently being given to people 65 and over and on the front lines
Once the vaccine is thawed out of the freezer, it must be used or discarded within five days – a requirement that has also caused problems.
In Kentucky, a Lexington Walgreen was blown up by Governor Andy Beshear for distributing vaccines to the general public after a series of doses thawed by the nursing home pharmacy failed to distribute before expiration.
Ultimately, the main bottleneck seems to be the number of staff available to manage the pushes.
Under optimal conditions, a single nurse working a 12-hour shift could only give 72 doses per day, provided the nurse did not take breaks and fired a shot every 10 minutes, including the time it took to search for allergies in the anamnesis and enter patient information in recording systems.
To deliver one million doses a day nationwide, as Biden has promised, nearly 14,000 employees would have to work full-time on vaccines – even when many health systems are stretched to the limit of handling COVID patients.
(tagsToTranslate) Dailymail (t) Messages (t) Dr. Anthony Fauci (t) Pfizer (t) Joe Biden