The wall Americans hope they can build against the surge of COVID-19 across the country is vaccinations. The process has been much slower than expected. At one point, the federal government had as its goal to vaccinated 20 million people before the end of last year. The process to do so never came close. Now, vaccine doses have run out or extremely low in a number of states. Vulnerable parts of the population have not received the first of the two doses they need.
Joe Biden said that 100 Americans will be vaccinated in his first 100 days in office. Dr. Anthony Fauci confirmed this was possible, but he did not go beyond that assessment. The rate at which vaccines have been given to residents from state to state varies widely. In one state, the number is very low.
Across the county, 3.2% of America’s population have had at least one shot. According to The New York Times, just over 31 million doses have been distributed. Of these, just under 12.3 million shots have been given, so “doses used” sit at 39%.
In Alabama, a state in serious trouble currently due to the rapid spread of the disease, only 1.8% of people have received at least one shot. The state with the best number is West Virginia at 6.3%.
Alabama’s deaths per 100,000 people over a seven-day average is the second highest in the nation at 1.86. In five counties, the number is over 8.0.
Nationally, COVID-19 cases have reached 24,290,413 and rise by more than 200,000 each day. The fatal case count is 403,063 and has increased by more than 4,000 some days. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expects fatal cases in the United States to reach 500,000 by mid-February.
Alabama has 424,028 confirmed cases and fatal cases number 6,121. AL.com recently reported that Alabama just had its worst week ever for new reported coronavirus deaths, and it wasn’t even close:
The Alabama Department of Public Health reported more 829 deaths this week — more than doubling the previous record of 384 set the week before Christmas.
The state reported at least 100 deaths in one day four times this week, including an all-time high of 226 deaths reported on Jan. 12. That’s the only time Alabama has ever seen more than 200 deaths added in a day.
The delay of vaccinations in Alabama comes at a time when a quicker pace is desperately needed.