Despite America’s large supply of COVID-19 vaccines, the growth of the share of vaccinated Americans is slowing down. Beginning on April 11th, the daily rate of vaccinations in the United States reversed course from increasing daily to decelerating.
As of April 28th, approximately 29.5% of Americans are fully vaccinated: over 95,000,000 Americans have received either two Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or one Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
While virologists and experts continue to push for herd immunity, which would translate to anywhere between 60% to 90% of Americans being fully vaccinated, even a 29.5% vaccination rate has driven down cases, hospital visits, and COVID-19 deaths massively. Some now argue that the combined forces of vaccine hesitancy and logistical hurdles will make full herd immunity nearly impossible to achieve.
Indeed, only roughly 2.8 million doses of the vaccine were put in American arms on April 23rd, compared to 4 million on April 9th. Arizona’s data is comparable: the peak of daily vaccinations was on March 31st, with over 75,000 doses put in arms that day. As of April 23rd, the Arizona daily rate was just over 50,000. The current trajectory is not expected to suddenly accelerate.
Much of the slow-down in vaccinations can be linked to vaccine hesitancy. Even those who trust the vaccine are “waiting it out”. While vaccine hesitancy seems to be slowing down, according to polling from March, a significant portion of Americans continue to be skeptical: 13% will “definitely not” take the vaccine, 7% will if it’s required, and 17% will “wait and see.”
In addition to vaccine hesitancy, low-income communities are being hit harder due to lack of resources.
Political leaders ranging from Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, to President Joe Biden, to former President Donald Trump are encouraging Americans to get vaccinated. Upon receiving his second vaccination, Gov. Ducey said, “The vaccine is safe, effective, and free. Arizonans 16+ are eligible. We’ve got this, Arizona!”
In March, Trump encouraged all Americans to receive the vaccine: “I would recommend it, and I would recommend it to a lot of people that don’t want to get it, and a lot of those people voted for me, frankly… it is a great vaccine. It is a safe vaccine, and it is something that works.”
For more information on the COVID-19 vaccine and where you can receive it, visit this link.