The White House: 70% of adults have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine

The White House announces that 70% of adults have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine

The White House declared that more than 70 percent of adults had received at least one dose of the vaccine, and officials had set July 4 as the target date but stopped mentioning it because it became clear that it would be missed.

The White House announced Monday that it has finally achieved its goal of providing at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine to 70 percent of the adult population — about a month after the original deadline.

President Biden had set the July 4 goal, promising a "summer of freedom" as the country reopens.

The achievement will come as a relief to health officials as they battle the surge in coronavirus cases, fueled by the highly contagious delta variant and resistance to vaccines among some sectors of society.

But officials stopped mentioning the goal when it was clear that it would not be achieved.

 Dr. Francis Collins said he believes the recent surge in cases may have changed opinions and prompted more vaccinations. In the past two weeks, he said, rates have gone up 56 percent.

"This could be a turning point for those who have been reluctant to say, 'Okay, it's time,'" he told CNN on Sunday.

'I hope this is what happens. This is precisely what must happen if we want to put this delta variable back in place.

The surge in cases has led federal officials, mayors, and governors to wrestle once again with mandates for masks and other measures to stem the spread.

On Sunday, Florida reported 10,207 people were hospitalized with COVID-19. That surpassed the previous record of 10,170 in July of last year - long before a vaccine was available.

The president of the Florida Hospital Association said that while death rates remain below the previous high level, there are worrying numbers of young people in the hospital.

"A much younger population is being hospitalized today," Mary Mayhew told MSNBC, adding that it was essential to get the vaccination message across to young people.

"We have 25-year-olds hospitalized in intensive care on ventilators."

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