Covid $ 1.9 trillion: Biden rolls out massive pandemic rescue plan

16 Janvier, 2021, 05:57 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
  • Biden's virus plan: 100 million shots just the start

The Public Health Service Commissioned Corps is a little-known branch of the U.S. military that includes medical professionals. Only about 40% of doses of vaccine distributed have made it into people's arms, according to the latest CDC data released Friday.

Mr Biden campaigned a year ago on a promise to take the pandemic more seriously than President Donald Trump, and the package aims to put that pledge into action with an influx of resources for the COVID-19 response and economic recovery.

According to a document released by his transition team, Biden would invoke the Defense Production Act to increase production of equipment needed to distribute the vaccines, such as glass vials, needles and syringes. But the team also sought to tamp down expectations.

Joe Biden says that administering 100 million shots in his first 100 days is only the beginning of his coronavirus plan.

The American Rescue Plan calls for investing $20 billion in a national vaccination program, including launching community vaccination centers around the country and mobile units in difficult-to-reach areas.

Biden will now ask lawmakers to spend heavily on measures created to cushion the economic fallout from the pandemic, including expanded unemployment benefits and additional direct payments to most Americans.

The plan would extend moratoriums on foreclosures and evictions until September and include funding for rental and utility assistance. The Trump administration has also frequently used the Defense Production Act to give vaccine makers priority with suppliers for raw ingredients and other materials.

Biden is asking Congress to approve a $1.9 trillion emergency package to combat the coronavirus pandemic and boost a sputtering economic recovery.

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But the President-elect said he was "convinced" that his administration could meet his goal of administering 100 million vaccine shots in his first 100 days in office.

Time is of the essence. "We can not afford inaction", Biden said in a televised address last night. "If we can set up vaccine clinics faster and more efficiently, how many lives do we save?"

Mr. Biden intends for the federal government not only to develop mass vaccination sites, but also to reimburse states for the use of National Guard troops to administer vaccines.

The vaccine distribution plan is part of Mr. Biden's broader effort to use the current crisis to rebuild the nation's crumbling public health infrastructure - long a goal of Democrats on Capitol Hill.

The President-elect continued: "We'll fix the problem by encouraging states to allow more people to get vaccinated beyond health care workers and move through those groups as quickly as they think we can".

Bonds fell, pushing yields to multi-month highs last week after Goldman Sachs said Biden would unveil a $750 billion fiscal stimulus plan, including some $300 billion in stimulus cheques to Americans.

Almost 390,000 people in the United States have died with the virus during the pandemic, and the country has logged more than 23 million infections, according to a New York Times database. More than 4,400 deaths were announced on Tuesday, a record. Many Centers for Disease Control and Prevention staff are members of the Public Health Service corps.

The President-elect has received both doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine, and was administered both shots live on camera while reassuring the American public of its safety.

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