Nearly half of the U.S. population ages 65 and older has received the first dose of the coronavirus vaccine, White House senior adviser Andy Slavitt said.
The U.S. has doubled the pace of vaccinations since President Biden took office on Jan. 20, Mr. Slavitt said at a briefing Friday by the White House Covid-19 response team. Nearly one in five Americans have received a first dose of the vaccine, he said.
Mr. Slavitt said he would hold a call later Friday with thousands of business owners to seek help in vaccination efforts. The administration will ask U.S. companies to offer vaccination incentives to employees, such as paid time off or compensation for those getting vaccinated; to require masking and social distancing on their premises; and to amplify messaging by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about vaccines and mask-wearing.
The Biden administration has said it reached deals to secure enough doses to inoculate most of the American population by the end of July. On Thursday, Mr. Biden marked the 50 millionth coronavirus vaccine administered in the U.S. since he took office, which marked the halfway point of the president’s 100-day goal of 100 million doses.