The president signed an executive order to increase purchases from US manufacturers to accelerate the pace of vaccinations.
President Joe Biden is targeting a bigger goal for coronavirus vaccination, following up on his statements from Monday. Biden said the nation could soon be seeing 1.5 million shots on average per day.
Biden’s plan comes via his executive order that boosts government purchases from US manufacturers. The president’s mandate is also focused on tackling a severely damaged economy. He is in discussions with Congress over a $1.9 trillion stimulus package.
A national vaccination program is part of the stimulus plan.
Biden’s new goal came after he and his team of experts faced criticism for the 100-million dose goal during his first 100 days in office. Over the last week, the country has accelerated the pace of vaccination and has already met that goal.
“I think we may be able to get that to […] 1.5 million a day, rather than 1 million a day,” Biden said, “but we have to meet that goal of a million a day.”
The president added he expects widespread availability of vaccines for Americans by spring, with the goal of reaching herd immunity and ending the pandemic by summer.
Biden said other key factors in ramping up the goal are having enough quantities of vaccines, syringes, and other necessary equipment, as well as enough people to administer vaccinations.
The president’s commitment comes at a time when speeding up the vaccination process is most urgent, faced with the presence of new variants of the virus in the US.
On Monday, Minnesota officials confirmed a P.1 variant in a traveler from Brazil. The CDC warns about the potential increase in the spread of COVID-19 or reinfection with this variant.
The United Kingdom variant has been detected in 24 states, with Florida in the lead. New data suggests this strain could be deadlier.
California has been affected by the L452R strain, with outbreaks in some of the state’s counties. This variant was first detected in Denmark in March 2020.