The president of the United States, Joe Biden, has ruled out that the country will achieve “herd immunity” against covid-19 in the next six months, considering that the vaccination campaign has not reached the ideal pace to accelerate a return to normalcy.
“The idea that this can be done and that we can achieve herd immunity long before the end of next summer (boreal, in September) is very difficult.“Said Biden in the first televised interview he gave after his inauguration on January 20, the first half of which was broadcast on CBS before the Super Bowl broadcast. A second part will be broadcast this Monday.
Days ago, he had commented that the milestone would be reached when vaccines are available to the general public, but he warned that would take months.
When asked if the country can wait a year to achieve herd immunity – with 75% of Americans vaccinated – if it continues to immunize at the current rate of 1.3 million daily doses, Biden blamed the Administration on his predecessor, Donald Trump.
“We can’t (wait), that’s why one of the disappointments when we came to power was the circumstances related to how the Administration had been handling COVID, it was worse than we had thought”, Said the president.
“We thought they had indicated that there were many more vaccines available, and that was not the case, so that is why we reinforced it in every possible way,” he added.
In this regard, he noted that he has spoken with the commissioner of the National Football League (NFL), Roger Goodell, to use 32 stadiums in the vaccination campaign.
Also, he added that has lobbied the pharmaceutical companies Moderna and Pfizer (the two that have received emergency authorization in the US) to increase production.
In the last week, according to Bloomberg’s count, for the first time the US administered two million vaccines in a single day. The hope is that increased vaccine production and possible licensing of Johnson & Johnson’s formula in a matter of weeks will give a key boost to the immunization campaign.
The president considered that there is a “national emergency” due to the pandemic, which has caused millions of women to lose their jobs, schools remain closed and mental disorders in citizens have increased.
In that sense, he opined that “it’s about time schools reopen safely”. “You have to have fewer people in the classes, you have to have ventilation systems that have been renewed,” said Biden, who added that this week they will release the minimum requirements for schools to reopen their doors.
The tradition of airing an interview with the President of the United States during pre-Super Bowl programming dates back to 2004 with George W. Bush, but it was really Barack Obama (2009-2017) who instituted this tradition by giving one each year of his two mandates.
During his four years in the White House, Donald Trump (2016-2021) gave interviews on the occasion of the Super Bowl in 2017 and 2020, when his favorite television channel, Fox News, had the broadcasting rights, as well as in 2019, when CBS had them, but refused to grant one in 2018 to NBC.
(With information from EFE)
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