The spread of COVID-19 has slowed considerably in the past two months. After a terrible surge after the winter holidays, yesterday’s new COVID-19 cases rose 30,980 to 33,238,422. That daily pace is a drop of well over a third since earlier in the year. Deaths rose 655 yesterday to 594,188. No one could have imagined early in 2020 that U.S. deaths would eventually reach 600,000. Even with the rapid spread of the disease in India and other large nations. U.S. deaths account for 17% of the world’s total.
The United States has begun to “open up” considerably. The CDC has significantly loosened mask rules. Many businesses and schools have started to reopen completely. Some public health officials and epidemiologists worry that variants may change the course of the disease if new ones spread more rapidly as has been the situation in India.
Vaccinations have been critical to the slowdown. Presently, 49% of Americans have been given at least one dose of vaccine. A total of 38% have been fully vaccinated. A total of 354,914,965 doses have been delivered. Of these 281,595,351 have been given, or 79%. Vermont has done the best job of vaccinating its population so far. Sixty-seven percent of its residents have been given at least one shot. Fifty percent have been fully vaccinated.
The state that has lagged the most is Mississippi, where only 33% of the population has been given at least one shot and only 26% have been fully vaccinated. In Mississippi, 2,571,575 doses have been delivered and 1,728,662 have been given, a rate of 67%. That is also much worse than the national number.