New York, Florida lowers the vaccination threshold to 60 years

The American states of New York and Florida are preparing to make Covid-19 vaccines available to people aged 60 and over as the vaccination campaign accelerates in the United States – the country in the world hardest hit by the pandemic.

From March 10, New York state residents 60 and older can be vaccinated, Governor Andrew Cuomo said at a news conference Tuesday, although appointments remain difficult to get on government websites.

In New York, as in many other US states, vaccines – originally reserved for caregivers and nursing home residents – are now considered essential to people over 65 years of age and to people with underlying health conditions and a growing number of workers such as fire departments and police.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis announced Monday that people over 60 will be eligible to apply for the vaccine there from March 15.

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have provided guidelines on priority populations for the vaccine at the federal level, states can set their own criteria.

In a decentralized country like the United States, this means that policies vary from state to state, and sometimes even within a single state.

According to the CDC, nearly 30 percent of the US population over 65 is already fully immunized. For the general population, the complete vaccination rate is 9.5 percent.

The campaign continues to gain momentum. An average of 2.2 million people were injected daily for the past week, with a record 2.9 million injections in a single day on Saturday, according to a White House adviser.

President Joe Biden has promised that by the end of May the United States will have adequate vaccine supplies to the entire population.

cat / st / dw

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