DALLAS (AP) – Disneyland reopened on Friday, and cruise lines welcomed the news that they could sail back to the United States by summer, as the number of Americans fully vaccinated against COVID-19 reached another milestone: 100 million.
Visitors cheered and screamed with delight as the Southern California Theme Park opened its doors for the first time in 13 months as a powerful symbol of US recovery, although the self-proclaimed Happiest Place on Earth only allows visitors to the country for now. with only 25% capacity.
The reopening and similar steps elsewhere in the country reflect growing optimism as COVID-19 deaths plummet and vaccinated ranks increase – in stark contrast to the deteriorating disaster in India and Brazil and the scarce availability of vaccines in very poor parts of the country. the world.
In fact, the United States said Friday it would limit travel from India on Tuesday, citing a devastating increase in COVID-1
While the total number of lives lost to COVID-19 in the United States has overshadowed 575,000, deaths have dropped to an average of about 670 per day from a peak of about 3,400 in mid-January.
Thirty-nine percent of the country’s adult population is fully vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Over 55% of adults received at least one dose.
About 8% of those who received a dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine did not return for their second shot, officials said. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s best infectious disease expert, said it was important to complete the course to get maximum protection against the coronavirus.
“Make sure you get this second dose,” he told a White House briefing.
Dr Leana Wen, a former health commissioner in Baltimore and a visiting professor of health policy at George Washington University, said the full vaccination of about 40% of older Americans was a great achievement, but not enough.
“The hardest thing is ahead of us,” she said. “I am very concerned that we will not get anywhere near reaching herd immunity in 2021.”
Wen noted that Fauci estimated that 70% to 85% of the US population would need to be vaccinated to achieve immunity to the herd.
Immunization driving has slowed in recent weeks, even when the shots were open to all adults. Wen said better weather and fewer cases would make it harder to reach people who had not yet been vaccinated.
“Those people who are on the fence to get the vaccine may have less reason to get it now because they no longer see the coronavirus as an existential crisis,” she said.
CDC officials also said Friday that anxiety – not a problem with gunshots – was the cause of fainting, dizziness and other reactions reported in 64 people at vaccine clinics in five countries in early April. No one got seriously ill.
Cruise lines, meanwhile, have cheered news that the CDC has pledged to resume sailing in the United States by the summer and is adjusting some of the rules to speed up the process.
Earlier this week, the CDC said in a letter to the industry that it would allow ships to cruise without first undergoing practical voyages if 98% of the crew and 95% of the passengers were fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
“The voices of community leaders and the wider cruise community are being heard – and we are very grateful for that,” said Lazisa Lambert, a spokeswoman for the International Cruise Line Association.
US cruises have been halted by the March 2020 pandemic.
New York is set to “completely open”
In New York, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Thursday that he expects the restrictions on COVID-19 to be lifted and the city to “reopen” by July 1st. He cites rising levels of vaccination and declining hospitalizations.
“We are ready to open stores, to open companies, offices, theaters, in full force,” he told MSNBC.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said during the crisis that such decisions were his alone, and said on Thursday that he would like to lift the restrictions even earlier.
“I don’t want to wait that long. I think if we do what we have to do, we can be open sooner,” he said.
Cuomo said on Friday that New York could increase indoor dining to 75% of capacity from May 7.
In Michigan, which has become the worst hotspot in the United States in recent weeks, figures are finally showing improvement, and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has announced a plan to link lifting restrictions to the state’s vaccination rate.
Anderson reports from New York, a toxin from Anaheim, California.
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