US President Joe Biden has expressed frustration over the slowing the COVID-19 vaccination rate in the US and pleaded that it’s “gigantically important” for Americans to step up and get inoculated for the virus as it surges once again. Biden, speaking at a televised town hall in Cincinnati on Wednesday said the public health crisis has turned largely into a plight of the unvaccinated as the spread of the Delta variant has led to a surge in infections around the country.
“We have a pandemic for those who haven’t gotten the vaccination — it’s that basic, that simple,” he said on the CNN town hall.
The President also expressed optimism that children under 12 will be approved for vaccination in the coming months. But he displayed exasperation that so many eligible Americans are still reluctant to get a shot.
“If you’re vaccinated, you’re not going to be hospitalised, you’re not going to be in the IC unit, and you’re not going to die. So it’s gigantically important that … we all act like Americans who care about our fellow Americans,” Biden said at the forum at Mount St. Joseph University.
The US hospitalisations and deaths are nearly all among the unvaccinated. But COVID-19 cases nearly tripled in the US over two weeks amid an onslaught of vaccine misinformation that is straining hospitals, exhausting doctors, and pushing clergy into the fray.
Across the US, the seven-day rolling average for daily new cases rose over the past two weeks to more than 37,000 on Tuesday, up from less than 13,700 on July 6, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
Health officials blame the Delta variant and slowing vaccination rates. Just 56.2 per cent of Americans have gotten at least one dose of the vaccine, according to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.
The President noted that the rise has become so concerning that even his critics are pushing back against vaccine misinformation.
(By Associated Press)