WASHINGTON — President Biden is now entering the home stretch of an ambitious goal of getting 70% of American adults vaccinated with at least one dose.
As of Friday, the number stands at 63% with a month to go. About 136 million or so Americans are considered fully vaccinated.
WHERE DO WE STAND?
While the U.S. continues to be one of the world leaders in vaccine rates, it appears as though it will be very close as to whether 70% will be actually reached.
That's because vaccine rates have stalled in many states and so far only 12 states have reached the 70% goal themselves.
Those states are California, Maryland, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
A number of states are on pace to need a few more months to reach the goal.
For instance, one analysis indicated Arizona may need two more months to reach the goal. The same is true in Ohio.
Mississippi may need more than a year to reach the goal based on current rates. Only 44% of Mississippi residents are considered vaccinated.
The actual consequences of not reaching the goal vary since most restrictions have been lifted in the United States.
However, experts warn that areas with low vaccine rates would be susceptible to localized outbreaks.
One way for President Biden to meet the goal is to have high-performing states, like Massachusetts, continue to outperform low-performing states like Mississippi.
But that strategy is proving difficult now as well, with some areas in Massachusetts, such as Newton, nearing 100% as more rural areas in Massachusetts are seeing a leveling off of vaccinations.