US

Biden receives second reminder and marks ‘new moment’ in pandemic

Washington – President Biden said Wednesday that the United States has reached a “new moment” in the Covid-19 pandemicbecause the United States has the tools to protect people and the virus “no longer controls our lives”.

Mr. Biden, 78, received his second COVID-19 reminder on camera on Wednesday, a day after the Food and Drug Administration authorized a new round of Moderna and Pfizer vaccine doses for Americans over 50. The president, who received his first reminder in September, is one of 34 million Americans now eligible to receive a second reminder.

Mr. Biden obtained the vaccine after providing an update on the status of the pandemic and announcing the rollout of COVID.gov, a new website intended to help Americans access information about vaccines, treatments and case levels in a given community. The president described the website as a “one-stop shop” for Americans’ COVID-19-related needs.

“Because of the strategy we have implemented over the past year on vaccinations, testing for treatments and more, we are now in a new moment of this pandemic,” the president said Wednesday. “It doesn’t mean COVID-19 is over. It means COVID-19 no longer controls our lives, that’s what it means.”

US President Biden receives a second coronavirus (COVID-19) booster shot at the White House in Washington
US President Joe Biden receives a second coronavirus disease (COVID-19) booster shot after delivering remarks on COVID-19 in the South Court Auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building at the White House in Washington, United States, on March 30, 2022.

KEVIN LAMARQUE / REUTERS


The president also highlighted the administration’s “test to treat” initiative he announced in his State of the Union address, which has expanded to more than 2,000 sites nationwide. The goal of the program is to get Americans tested and, if they test positive and need treatment, to help them get a prescription filled at the same location.

The President also urged Congress to pass new COVID-19 funding for vaccines and treatments. The administration has warned lawmakers that the United States will not have enough vaccines for a fourth vaccine for all Americans, nor enough funding for antibody treatments. administration asked Congress for $30 billion. The president warned that the United States would not be able to sustain testing capacity beyond June, leaving the country vulnerable to another wave of the virus.

“We are already seeing the consequences of Congressional inaction,” Biden said Wednesday. “Monoclonal antibodies – take monoclonal antibodies, for example. They’ve helped save lives. It’s not partisan – it’s medicine. But Congress hasn’t provided enough money to continue to buy these monoclonal antibodies. We’ve had to cancel orders and cut off the supply we’re sending to the states. Without more funding, we’ll start to run out of them by the end of May.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 975,000 Americans have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic began. Hospitalizations and deaths trended downward over the past month. Nearly 70% of Americans age 5 and older are fully vaccinated, and 89% of Americans age 65 and older are fully vaccinated, according to the CDC. But the majority of American adults still haven’t received a reminder.

Alex Tin contributed to this report.

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