The United States broke the daily vaccination record this weekend and on Monday (8) released the long-awaited guidelines for the behavior of Americans vaccinated against Covid-19. Despite the positive data, health officials warn that the danger remains imminent and that loosening restrictions such as social detachment and wearing masks could hamper progress in the country so far.
After a slow start in vaccination, with an average of 900,000 applications per day between December and January, the United States reached 5.3 million vaccinations administered last weekend, with a record 2.9 million nothing than Saturday (6).
The jump can be attributed to a number of factors, including greater confidence among the American population in the vaccine and the opening of mass vaccination centers, in sports stadiums and arenas, and in 18 agency warehouses. Federal Emergency Management System (Fema, in English), many are open 24 hours a day.
In most states, supermarkets and pharmacies are joining hospitals and medical centers as vaccination posts which, in total, have applied at least one dose of the immunizer to 58 million people since December 14, or 16% of the population. American population.
Research published Friday (5) by the Pew Research Center showed that U.S. support for the vaccine has also increased in recent months, and now 69% of them plan to receive – or have already received – the vaccine, up from 60% who in November intends to do so.
President Joe Biden has pledged that by the end of May there will be doses for all adults in the country who wish to be vaccinated, two months before the originally announced deadline.
With the advance of vaccination and the drop in the number of new cases and deaths from Covid-19 – which remain at a high level, but less than in recent months – states like Arizona, Texas, Alabama , New York and California decided to ease restrictions they had, in a way, been in place for almost a year.
The move, coupled with new variants of the virus spreading across the country, triggered the White House and health officials’ alert on a possible new and fourth outbreak in the country.
In Arizona, for example, Republican Gov. Doug Ducey exceeded the capacity limit in bars and restaurants, but said he would maintain the requirement to wear a mask in public places. Texas Gov. Republican Greg Abbott announced the return of full occupation of commercial establishments and rescinded the mandatory use of masks. In Alabama, where the government is also led by the Republican Party, face protection will no longer be mandatory in April.
While the stance on wearing masks remains highly political – Democrats are more open to face masks, governors in Biden’s party have also announced easing in recent days.
Gavin Newsom, of California, said he would allow theme parks to operate and sporting and outdoor events to begin next month, albeit with reduced capacity and mandatory masks in stadiums. In New York, Andrew Cuomo will give the green light to restaurants with outdoor space to occupy up to 75% of their capacity.
According to data from Johns Hopkins University, the United States has recorded an average of 60,000 new cases per day – up from 260,000 in January – and the daily death toll is around 1,700. Two months ago, the victims went from 4,000 in 24 hours.
Director of the Institute of Infectious Diseases, Anthony Fauci said that, even with improved data, it is not possible to lower our guard and there is a risk of a new epidemic with a plateau deemed still quite high. “We want to go back carefully and slowly,” Fauci told CBS News over the weekend. “But you can’t turn the switch on and off, because it would be really risky to have another outbreak again.”
The opinion of the expert, one of Biden’s top White House advisers, is being followed by officials from the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Michael Osterholm, one of the agency’s directors, for example, reiterated that the United States is “in the eye of the hurricane” and that there could be an increase in the number of cases due to the new variants, like the one identified first. in the United Kingdom and which continues to grow in the United States.
According to Osterholm, 40% of cases across the country are linked to this new strain of the virus.
When she released the guidelines for people who received the last dose of the vaccine in the United States on Monday, CDC director Rochelle Walensky said she was aware of the angst Americans “are starting to do again. things they love with those they love ”, but warned that millions more must be vaccinated so that everyone can stop following precautions – so-called herd immunity should only be obtained in states -United only in the middle of the year.
For the 31 million people already fully vaccinated in the country, the CDC says it is possible to take a first step towards the new normal, with meetings of the vaccinated in small groups without masks.
In the United States, there are three vaccines approved for use – Pfizer and Moderna, with two doses each – and one from Johnson & Johnson, with a single application.