Many U.S. states and cities have a growing surplus of Covid-19 vaccines, a sign that in some places demand is slowing before a large percentage of the population has been inoculated, according to an analysis by Bloomberg News. The data indicate as many as one in three doses are unused in some states. Appointments for shots often go untaken, with few people signing up.
Bloomberg analyzed state and U.S. data from Monday, providing a snapshot of vaccine use before Johnson & Johnson shelved millions of shots pending federal health officials’ investigation into rare cases of blood clots. That pause will likely cause the number of unused shots to fluctuate, but will little change the comparisons of states.Overall, demand remains strong. In the U.S., 37% of people have gotten at least one dose, and the country is one of the world leaders in vaccinations. But even some states that are doing well are struggling with stubborn pockets where uptake is low.
NYC Hints at Possible Easing of Mask Rules
COVID-19 numbers in New York City are still not where they need to be to lift all remaining business restrictions like Connecticut plans to do next month, Mayor Bill de Blasio says, but he hinted outdoor mask rules may not be so stringent come summer.
“Continue to wear their masks and I’ll keep saying it, at least through June,” the mayor said as he talked about the city’s vaccine efforts. “Stick with the mask, stick with the social distancing, people are still being smart and cautious and that’s helping us.”A similar message reverberates at state and federal levels around masks. With so many lingering questions around vaccinations, and only 26% of New York City residents fully vaccinated at this point, officials stress masking up is an ongoing public safety need.