US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy on Sunday called the number of new coronavirus cases nationwide “deeply concerning,” adding that there are more children hospitalized in the United States with COVID-19 than at any time. another time during the pandemic due to the strong contagious delta variant.
More than 151,000 new cases of COVID-19 have been reported in the United States every day – up more than 1,000% from June, according to information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. About 18% of new transmissions are those involving children, according to the data. The increase in the number of cases was due to the delta variant, Murthy told Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday”.
“How far could they go is an open question,” Murthy continued. “The vast majority of people who end up in hospital and lose their lives from this disease are the unvaccinated, which means that the vaccines do their job to keep people out of the hospital and save lives.”
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More than a million people have been vaccinated every day in the past three days in the United States, which Murthy called “encouraging.” He called those who have not yet done so and said he hopes the number of COVID-19 vaccinations will continue to rise.
“This is ultimately how we’re going to save lives and overcome the data variant,” he continued.
The Food and Drug Administration is expected to fully approve the Pfizer vaccine this week, which could lead to an increase in the vaccination rate for those who waited, Murthy said.
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He said he thought it would “likely encourage” some places to institute vaccination mandates.
“There are universities and companies that have considered imposing vaccine requirements in order to create a safer working or learning environment,” he said. “And I think this FDA announcement would probably encourage them and put them more at ease.”
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U.S. health officials on Wednesday announced plans to distribute COVID-19 boosters to all Americans to boost their protection amid the burgeoning delta variant and signs of declining vaccine effectiveness.
The plan calls for an additional dose eight months after people receive their second injection of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine. Doses could start the week of September 20. People who have received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine will also likely need additional vaccines, health officials said. But they said they were waiting for more data.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.