US vaccinations tick up as delta variant spreads
The pace of vaccinations in the United States has picked up over the past week as the delta variant continues to spread and federal health officials warn of its impact, even among vaccinated individuals. 

US vaccinations tick up as delta variant spreads

The pace of vaccinations in the United States has picked up over the past week as the delta variant continues to spread and federal health officials warn of its impact, even among vaccinated individuals. 

The U.S. administered more than 700,000 shots for four days in a row this week, White House chief of staff Ron Klein said on Twitter. About 3 million people received their first dose of a coronavirus vaccine over the past seven days.

Klain said more adults are getting their first vaccine dose than at “any time in the past 8-10 weeks” and that rise is “particularly strong” in areas that have been hit hard by the delta variant.

White House deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters that this was the third week in which states with the highest numbers of cases saw an increase in new vaccinations. 

Alabama for instance, administered more than 14,000 vaccine doses on July 25, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). As of Thursday, the seven-day moving average of vaccinations was more than 10,000 doses.

Florida, which has seen a 50 percent increase in coronavirus cases over the past week, has also reported a 15 percent increase in the number of vaccine doses administered.

The vaccinations come as officials scramble to contain the spread of the delta variant, which now makes up a majority of new infections in the U.S.

The CDC issued new guidance this week recommending that even fully vaccinated people wear masks in “public, indoor settings” in areas of the country with substantial or high transmission. The reversal of the guidance was prompted by an outbreak in Massachusetts in which there were a number of breakthrough cases of the delta variant in vaccinated individuals. 

But officials still emphasized that vaccines work, with CDC Director Rochelle Walensky describing the uptick in cases as a “pandemic of the unvaccinated” earlier in the month. 

The increase in vaccinations comes after several local news outlets described infected patients that wanted to get vaccinated.

Michael Freedy, a father of five in Las Vegas who died from COVID-19 onThursday, reportedly told his fiancee in a text, “I should have gotten the damn vaccine” before he died.

Aimee Matzen, who was hospitalized with COVID-19 in Baton Rouge, La., told CNN that she was “furious with herself” for not getting vaccinated. She didn’t oppose vaccination, but said that “something would come up” every time she wanted to get one.

“The fact that I am here now, I am furious with myself,” Matzen told CNN. “Because I was not vaccinated.”

TAGS KARINE JEAN-PIERRE ROCHELLE WALENSKY

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