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President Joe Biden‘s Covid-19 response team is holding a news briefing Monday on the coronavirus pandemic, which has infected more than 27 million Americans and killed at least 463,482.
Biden is trying to pick up the pace of vaccinations in the United States after a slower-than-expected rollout under former President Donald Trump’s administration. The U.S. has distributed about 59.3 million vaccine doses, but only about 41.2 million have been administered as of Sunday at 6 a.m. ET, according to data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Andy Slavitt, a senior advisor to Biden’s Covid-19 response team, announced Friday that Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin approved the deployment of more than 1,000 troops to help deliver Covid-19 vaccines across the U.S. Some of the troops will arrive in California this week and begin operations by Monday, with additional states to follow, he said.
Federal officials are also pushing states to administer shots more quickly. Last week, Slavitt said some health-care providers were regularly holding back vaccines for second shots, causing vaccine appointments to be canceled and preventing some Americans from receiving their first doses.