Ever since the CDC officially recommended an additional dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine six months after the second dose for high-risk groups on September 24, the uptake of booster shots has outpaced new vaccinations in the United States at a rate of almost 2 to 1. That’s according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), showing that more than 43 million Americans received a booster shot since September 24, compared to just 22 million who received their first dose of any Covid vaccine.
While the CDC expanded its booster recommendation to include all adults on November 19 and recently strengthened its recommendation in light of the emergence of the Omicron variant, getting more people vaccinated in the first place remains crucial in the effort to end the pandemic. “I strongly encourage the 47 million adults who are not yet vaccinated to get vaccinated as soon as possible and to vaccinate the children and teens in their families as well,” CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said.
With just under 60 percent of the population fully vaccinated as of December 5, the United States trails other nations by a significant margin and remains far below the rate experts consider necessary to keep infections down and ultimately end the pandemic.