100 million Americans vaccinated, Biden White House says

COVID-19 Vaccine Eligibility Opens to All US Citizens.All adults in the United States and Puerto Rico are now eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont were the final states to open up eligibility on Monday.President Joe Biden had initially set May 1 as the deadline for all adults to become eligible, .but moved the date up to April 19 as vaccinations accelerated.More than 131 million adults, or half of all American adults, have received at least one dose as of Sunday

The White House announced Friday that 100 million American adults have been fully vaccinated against the coronavirus.

“That’s a hundred million Americans with a sense of relief and peace of mind, knowing that after a long and hard year, they’re protected from the virus,” White House coronavirus response director Jeff Zients said, as reported by CNN. “Knowing their decision to get vaccinated protects not just themselves but also protects their families, their friends and their communities.”

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On Wednesday, in his first speech to a joint session of Congress, President Joe Biden touted what he called his administration’s progress in fighting the pandemic which has already killed more than 575,000 Americans. Deaths have plummeted to an average of about 670 per day from a peak of around 3,400 in mid-January.

“After I promised 100 million COVID-19 vaccine shots in 100 days, we will have provided over 220 million COVID shots in 100 days,” Biden said. “We’re marshalling every federal resource. We’ve gotten the vaccine to nearly 40,000 pharmacies and over 700 community health centers. We’re setting up community vaccination sites and are deploying mobile units into hard-to-reach areas. Today, 90% of Americans now live within 5 miles of a vaccination site.”

On Friday, Disneyland in Southern California reopened, though the theme park is allowing only in-state guests and is operating at 25% capacity. This is the first time Disneyland has opened in 13 months.

In New York, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Thursday he expects to see COVID-19 restrictions lifted and the city “fully reopen” by July 1. He cited rising vaccination rates and decreasing hospitalizations, but New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has maintained throughout the crisis that such decisions are his alone, and he said Thursday he would like to lift restrictions even sooner if possible.

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However, about 8% of those who have gotten one dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine have not returned for their second shot, officials said. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, said it is important to complete the course to gain maximum protection against the coronavirus.

“Make sure you get that second dose,” he said at a White House briefing.

Earlier this week, the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Americans who have been fully vaccinated against the coronavirus don’t need to wear protective masks outdoors any longer.

The CDC is continuing to recommend masks for indoor gatherings or crowded outdoor events. Masks are no longer required for such activities as outdoor walking, running, hiking or biking; small outdoor gatherings with fully vaccinated family and friends; small outdoor gatherings with a mixture of fully vaccinated and unvaccinated people; and dining at outdoor restaurants with friends from other households.

Fully vaccinated people can also attend “a crowded, outdoor event, like a live performance, parade, or sports event,” as long as they remain masked, according to the CDC.

For most of the past year, the CDC had been advising Americans to wear masks outdoors if they are within 6 feet of each other.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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