Within the last few weeks, the COVID-19 vaccine has become more readily available for the average person. Depending on the state, it has had better distribution amongst its residents. According to data collected by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), more than 27 million doses of the vaccine have been administered since distribution began back in mid-December; however, this only accounts for approximately 6.9% of the total population of the United States.
This week alone, the United States was administering an average of 1.3 million shots per day. This falls short of the projected 1.6 million shots per day that will be required to achieve herd immunity by the end of the Summer 2021. Getting the shots from the federal government to the states, and into the arms of their residents has proved to be a logistical challenge with some states being more successful than others in administering their vaccines. Some of the more successful states such as West Virginia have even enlisted the National Guard to help them distribute the vaccine due to their logistical expertise.
According to the CDC, West Virginia, North Dakota, and South Dakota are currently the top three most efficient states in utilizing the vaccine that was distributed to them. As of January 29th, West Virginia, for example, had administered 86% of the vaccine that they received from the federal government. On the other hand, some states such as Kansas and Alabama have only been able to distribute 46% of their doses. In order to end the pandemic, Dr. Anthony Fauci initially estimated that we would have to vaccinate 60-70% of the U.S population. In recent weeks, Fauci has increased this estimate to 70-90% which means that we need to vaccinate at least 63% more of our population in order to possibly end this pandemic. The closer we get to achieving this number the sooner we will be able to get back to school and life as we once knew it.