In his first prime time public address on March 11, President Joe Biden announced he would ask all states to make COVID-19 vaccines available to all Americans 18 or older no later than May 1. Biden reiterated his goal of making such progress that the nation could return to a kind of normalcy by the Fourth of July. The pace at which the coronavirus is spreading across the United States has slowed considerably, and that is at least in part thanks to the growing ranks of Americans who have been inoculated.
The country, however, still has a long way to go if it is to meet Biden’s July 4 deadline. Tens of thousands of Americans are newly diagnosed with the virus daily, and rollout of the vaccine has been highly inconsistent from one state to the next. As of March 17, just 11.6% of the population have received two doses of the vaccine. Further, the distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which requires a single shot, did not begin in the U.S. until early March.
To determine the worst states for giving two vaccine doses, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed data on the number of vaccine doses distributed as of March 17, 2021, from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. States were ranked based on the number of residents who have received two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine as a percentage of the total population.
Each state has managed its vaccine rollout with varying levels of success. The state prioritization plan, differences in health care infrastructure, variance in geography and population, and the concentration of at-risk groups, have all had an impact on how quickly the vaccine has been distributed. These are the states where the most people are vaccinated.
Another factor at play in the state-by-state differences in vaccine distribution efficiency is how willing residents have been to be vaccinated. In a Census survey from February, anywhere from 13.9% to nearly half of state unvaccinated adult populations said they would probably or definitely not get a vaccine.