About 44% of the country has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and 32.3% of the population is fully vaccinated. In Arizona, 5,163,900 doses have been administered and 2,982,692 people have received at least one dose, meaning that 41.5% of the state has been vaccinated.
This information comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 data tacker.
After weeks of arduous debate and a devastating surge of COVID-19 cases in India that has killed thousands, the Biden administration announced Wednesday that it would back the waiver of intellectual property protections for COVID-19 vaccines. The New York Times hails this move as a “breakthrough for international efforts to suspend patent rules”. United States trade representative Katherine Tai announced the position in a statement:
This is a global health crisis, and the extraordinary circumstances of the Covid-19 pandemic call for extraordinary measures. The administration believes strongly in intellectual property protections, but in service of ending this pandemic, supports the waiver of those protections for Covid-19 vaccines.
Moderna (MRNA), BioNTech (BNTX) and Pfizer (PFE) stock all subsequently dove following the announcement, since other countries will be able to manufacture COVID-19 vaccines using the same technologies rather than being limited to negotiation with the companies, Investor’s Business Daily reports.
The Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) announced that doctor’s offices and clinics will be able to order COVID-19 vaccine beginning this week. The change will allow providers registered with ADHS to order from the CDC directly without requiring an allocation from the county health department. State officials are expecting that 100,000 doses will be available for smaller providers beginning this week, My Journal Courier reports.
White people have been vaccinated against COVID-19 at a higher rate than other racial or ethnic groups in Arizona since the beginning of the pandemic. Initially, the reason was that there are simply more white seniors in Arizona and they were a prioritized group, Tucson.com reports. University of Arizona’s Dr. Joe Gerald says that the continuing misalignment of vaccination by race and ethnicity is more complicated than general vaccine hesitancy:
It’s not race, per se, but rather the conditions and structural inequities that these groups face. Some of it may be, they may be more likely to live in an area where there’s a healthcare provider shortage. That kind of thing. So, it may be unrealistic to expect them to ever catch up fully.
There’s also a gender gap in Arizona and across the country for COVID-19 vaccination rates, according to AZCentral. 43% of Arizona females have received at least one dose, compared to 37% of all males. Even among seniors, 79% of Arizona men 65 and older have been vaccinated compared with 84% of Arizona women the same age. From Arizona Public Health Association executive director Will Humble:
It’s definitely a thing. It could be in the end we reach herd immunity with women. It’s making a difference. It’s slowing us down.
Humble focused on the potential for herd immunity in Arizona in the AzPHA blog this week, comparing the state to Israel and using Israeli data to estimate that 50% vaccination will be the threshold at which herd immunity is reached and a significant drop in cases and hospitalizations will begin. Humble also notes in the blog that Israel’s numbers do not include Palestine, which has been unable to reach any sort of mass vaccination program due to Israeli sanctions and has only received vaccine doses through the international vaccine sharing COVAX program.
President Joe Biden announced on Tuesday that he wants 70% of American adults vaccinated by the Fourth of July, AP reports.
I’d like to get it to 100% but I think realistically we can get to that place between now and July Fourth.
Banner Olive Branch Senior Center is offering free rides to COVID-19 vaccinations in an effort to get all seniors vaccinated, according to a Banner Health press release. From Dawn Gielau, director of Banner Olive Branch:
We all know that it is critical for our seniors to get vaccinated against COVID-19 but sometimes transportation can be an obstacle for our seniors. We want to remove that obstacle.