President-elect Joe Biden unveils trillion-dollar coronavirus recovery and mass vaccination plan
16 Janvier, 2021, 13:35 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
President-elect Joe Biden, inheriting responsibility for a pandemic that is unchecked and worsening after almost a year, has outlined his plan to throw the weight of the federal government behind getting Americans vaccinated against the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
Biden has promised to do better than President Donald Trump to curb the virus and get 100 million vaccine shots into the arms of Americans during his first 100 days in office.
Biden seconded the Trump administration's call earlier this week for states to start vaccinating more seniors, reaching those 65 and older as well as younger people with certain health problems.
A Trump administration official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the United States is on track to have 300 million doses available by the end of Biden's first 100 days in office.
A key challenge for Biden and the nation: Vaccines are in too-short supply. "Millions of Americans now turn to their local pharmacies every day for their medicines, flu shots, and much more. Investments in the caregiving economy and in skills and training needed by our workers to compete and win the global economy of the future", Biden said.
"Let me be clear, I'm convinced we can get it done".
USA officials also are asking states to expand the locations where people can be vaccinated by adding community health centers, pharmacies and mass vaccination sites. "They're hurting and they're hurting badly", Biden said. As Biden has pledged in the past, he will use the Defense Production Act to maximize the manufacturing of the vaccine and increase the supply. Instead of allocating vaccines based on the number of adults in each state, the HHS secretary said states will receive vaccines based on how quickly shots are administered, and their number of people 65 and older.
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"President-elect Biden has asked Congress to make an historic investment in expanding the public health workforce, funding 100,000 public health workers to almost triple the country's community health roles", the fact sheet reads.
The President-elect will use federal funds to create new community vaccination centers across the country and launch mobile vaccination clinics and provider partnerships to reach under-served urban areas and rural communities.
Biden is also moving more aggressively than the Trump administration to address a shortage of people available to administer the vaccine. His plan calls for the federal government to fully reimburse states that mobilise their National Guards to help distribute vaccines.
US President-elect Joe Biden has announced a United States dollars 1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package to tackle the economic fallout from the pandemic, including direct financial aid to average Americans, support to businesses and to provide a boost to the national vaccination programme. A paediatrician and attorney, he has emphasised a need to ease public concerns about the safety of the vaccines.
"These individuals will be hired to work in their local communities to perform vital tasks like vaccine outreach and contact tracing in the near term, and to transition into community health roles to build our long-term public health capacity that will help improve quality of care and reduce hospitalization for low-income and underserved communities."
Of 30.6 million doses distributed as of Thursday, than 11.1 million have been administered, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
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The WHO emergency committee has come out against countries requiring proof of vaccination from incoming worldwide travellers. Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO's Covid-19 technical lead, added: "This virus is risky on its own - variant or not".
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