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Nearly half of new US viral infections are in just five states

Almost half of the new coronavirus infections in the country are in only five states. A situation that puts pressure on the federal government to consider changing the way vaccines are distributed by sending more doses to hotspots.

New York, Michigan, Florida, Pennsylvania և New Jersey states together reported 44% of the country’s new COVID-19 infections, or nearly 197,500 new cases, in the past seven days, according to Hopkins University’s state health agency. Data: In the same week, the total number of US infections was more than 452,000.

The high concentration of new cases in 22 percent of the US population has prompted some experts and elected officials to urge President Joe Biden’s administration to send additional doses of the vaccine to those areas. So far, the White House has shown no signs of moving away from its policy of distributing vaccine doses to population-based states.

It makes sense to send extra doses to places where the number of infections is increasing. This was said by Dr. Elvin H., Professor of Infectious Diseases at the University of Washington. The gang. But it is also difficult. Countries that are more successful at controlling the virus may see fewer vaccines as a result.

More about the COVID-19 epidemic

“You would not want to make those people wait, because they did better,” Geng said. “On the other hand, it makes sense to send vaccines where the incidence is high.”

The sharp rise was particularly pronounced in Michigan, where the average daily seven-day infection rate reached 6,719, twice as many as two weeks ago. Only New York reported higher numbers. And California և Texas, which has a much larger population than Michigan, reports less than half of its daily infections.

Although Michigan has the highest rate of new infections in the past two weeks, Democratic Gretchen Whitmer has said she has no plans to tighten restrictions. He attributed the surge of the virus to epidemic fatigue, which causes people to move around as much as more infectious variants.

“Stepping back would not fix the problem,” Whitmer said when he received his first vaccine Tuesday at the NFL Lions House in Ford Field, Detroit. “What we need to do is actually put our foot on the pedal of the vaccine,” urge people to wear masks, maintain their social distance, and wash their hands.

Whitmer was shot 16 days later the next day in Michigan. During a meeting with governors last week, he asked the White House if it was considering sending additional vaccines to countries fighting the virus. He was told that all the options were on the table.

It is still difficult to get vaccine appointments in New York. Almost every day, Mayor Bill de Blasio publicly denied the federal government’s need for more vaccines, which he reiterated in an interview with reporters on Tuesday.

“We still need supply, supply, supply,” de Blasio said, adding, “But things are really improving.”

At the state level, Governor Andrew Cuomo has not publicly called for an increase in vaccines in New York, even as the incidence has risen in recent weeks and the number of people hospitalized has plummeted.

In New Jersey, where the seven-day moving average of new infections has risen from 4,050 to 4,250 a day over the past two weeks, Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy said he was constantly talking to the White House about requesting a coronavirus vaccine. , although he stopped lobbying for more vaccines because of the high level of infection in the state.

Vaccine shipments to New Ments have risen 12 percent in the past week, Murphy said on Monday, although he questioned whether that was enough.

“We are constantly watching, well, we know we are rising, but are we rising at the pace we should be, especially given the number of cases we have?” Murphy said.

The new variants of the virus are clearly one of the drivers of growth, says Dr. Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, chair of the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of California, San Francisco. “Not suppressing the increase in cases will lead to more people getting sick and dying,” he said. “Increasing the number of cars in other parts of the country.”

“There needs to be more vaccines where the virus is,” Bibins-Domingo said, adding that people need to overcome the “scarcity mindset” that they think adding vaccines in one place would hurt people elsewhere.

In Florida, safeguards provided during the busy spring break season may have contributed to the spread of the virus, says Ason Eason Salemi, an epidemiologist at the University of South Florida. The state’s average of seven days of new infections per day has exceeded 5,400, a 20% increase over the past two weeks.

Although many new infections appear to be among younger people, Salemi said he is concerned about Florida seniors. 78% of people over the age of 65 have received at least one dose of the vaccine, but 1 million people have not yet received a shot.

“We seem to have a supply,” Salemi said. “Aren’t these people going to be vaccinated?”

Rumors of more shots being fired in some states come at a time when the number of daily infections in the United States has fallen sharply since the January increase following the holiday season. However, the average daily seven-day infection rate has been slowly rising since mid-March.

The five states with the highest rates of infection stand out the most. As of Tuesday, 31 US states reported an average of less than 1,000 new cases per day in seven days.

White House coronavirus coordinator FF Zi Jens said on Tuesday that more than 28 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine would be delivered to the states this week. This allocation will increase the total US to more than 90 million doses distributed over the past three weeks.

The news came as Biden announced that more than 150 million coronavirus shots had been fired since taking office, and that all adults would be eligible for the vaccine until April 19.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 40 percent of U.S. adults now receive at least one COVID-19 shot. 23% of American adults are fully vaccinated, including more than half of Americans over 65:.

Geng said that the nation should take a step back and go slowly. Even just a few weeks when Americans are committed to social distance and other precautions can make a huge difference.

“The message to take here is the following. “Let’s not drop our weapons,” Geng said. “There is light at the end of the tunnel. We all see it there. And we will get there. Slow and steady. “

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Bainum reported from Savannah, Georgia. Smith reported from Providence, Rhode Island. Associated Press writers Darlene Superville in Washington, D.C. David Egert of Lansing, Michigan, Adriana Gomez Lico of Miami, and Michael Catalini of Trenton, New Jersey, also contributed to this report.

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