June 13 (UPI) — The United States is nearing 600,000 COVID-19 deaths as the nation continues an effort to vaccinate the majority of its population.
As of Sunday afternoon, the United States has reported 599,748 COVID-19 deaths and 33,460,039 infections since the start of the pandemic last year and added 192 deaths and 8,207 cases from the previous day, according to data gathered by Johns Hopkins University.
President Joe Biden in May set goals to have at least 70% of American adults receive at least one vaccine dose and 160 million adults fully vaccinated by July 4.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data shows that 52% of the total U.S. population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, including 64.4% of adults, while 143,921,222 people have been fully vaccinated including 139,643,429 adults.
New York, which was once the epicenter of the pandemic in the United States, has administered one vaccine dose to 67.3% of adults in the state and Gov. Andrew Cuomo last week announced the state would lift most pandemic-related restrictions when it hits 70%.
“Masks will only be required as recommended by the CDC,” he said. “There still will be some institutional guidelines. Large venues, schools, public transportation, hospitals, nursing homes. But we hit 70% we will be back to life as normal, or as normalized as you can be post-COVID.”
On Sunday, the state reported it had reached a record low in daily statewide positivity with 0.35%, as well as 0.61% total and a 7-day average of 0.51%. New York reported 14 new deaths and 442 cases, bringing its totals to 2,089,571 and 53,539 deaths since the start of the pandemic.
CDC data showed, however, that less than 50% of adults in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee and Wyoming have received at least one COVID-19 dose.
The United States was also administering slightly more than one million COVID-19 vaccine doses per day a 14% increase from the previous week, but lower than the average peak of 3.3 million per day in April.