President Joe Biden touted a new COVID-19 milestone Friday, with 300 million vaccinations administered within the first 150 days of his presidency, but also warned more effort is needed to defeat the pandemic.
“Today, we will have reached the mark of 300 million shots in arms in just 150 days,” President Biden said in a speech at the White House. “That’s an important milestone that just didn’t happen on its own or by chance.” That level of vaccination, he said, is “months ahead of what most anyone thought was possible when we started,” enabling Americans to look forward to what he called “a summer of joy and freedom.”
Reaching 300 million vaccinations means overcoming one of the “most complicated logistical challenges in American history” and required the commitment of the American people to “step up and get vaccinated,” the President said.
.@POTUS announced today: 300 million COVID shots in arms in the US in the last 150 days.
The big picture: More than 175 million Americans have gotten at least one COVID-19 vaccine shot & infection rates, as well as deaths, have decreased by more than 90.https://t.co/46qAckLXGX
— Karine Jean-Pierre (@KJP46) June 18, 2021
But with the continued spread of the ultra-contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus is still worrying scientists and medical experts. Despite the progress in vaccinations, the parts of the country lagging behind are seeing more serious consequences, President Biden warned.
“The truth is that deaths and hospitalizations are drastically down in places where people are getting vaccinated,” he said. “But unfortunately, cases of hospitalizations are not going down in many places.”
President Biden announced that 150 days into his administration, the U.S. has completed 300 million COVID-19 vaccine shots and 65% of adults have received at least one dose https://t.co/KhNf78LemR pic.twitter.com/AVOPpZ5KHf
— CBS News (@CBSNews) June 18, 2021
The White House said that as of Friday, 65% of adult Americans had received at least one shot, meaning the country is falling short of President Biden’s self-imposed goal of reaching 70% vaccinated by July 4th. Noting that the United States surpassed 600,000 deaths from COVID-19 this week, the President pleaded with Americans who had not been vaccinated to do so.
Watch President Biden’s remarks, below.