Biden will offer a virus update as the pace of vaccination accelerates

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Biden will offer a virus update as the pace of vaccination accelerates

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President Biden will promote his administration’s success in accelerating the pace of coronavirus vaccinations during two appearances on Tuesday, as officials in nearly every state say they will make shots available to all adults by his target of April 19.

Three months into his presidency, Mr. Biden confronts an escalating migrant surge at the border with Mexico and has embarked on a grind-it-out effort to ram through a $2.3 trillion infrastructure bill. But the virus remains his primary focus.

And he wants the country to know that — so he is offering multiple updates each week, along with helpful visual cues, like standing next to a giant Easter bunny wearing a mask.

On Tuesday afternoon, Mr. Biden will travel to Alexandria, Va., to tour a vaccination site at the Virginia Theological Seminary. Later, at the White House, he will deliver remarks emphasizing recent successes, including the milestone of delivering four million vaccinations in one day over the weekend.

More than three million doses are now being given on average each day, compared with well under one million when Mr. Biden took office in January, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Every state has now given at least one dose to a quarter or more of its population. About 62.4 million people — 19 percent of Americans — have been fully vaccinated.

On Monday, Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland announced that all Maryland residents 16 or older would be eligible from Tuesday for a shot at the state’s mass vaccination sites, and starting April 19 at any vaccine provider in the state.

Also on Monday, Gov. Philip D. Murphy of New Jersey and Mayor Muriel Bowser of Washington, D.C., said residents 16 or older would be eligible on April 19.

Gov. Kate Brown of Oregon announced Tuesday that all Oregonians over the age of 16 were eligible to receive a vaccine. The state had been limiting the doses to those with underlying conditions and frontline workers.

That leaves one state, Hawaii, keeping to Mr. Biden’s original deadline of May 1.

In Hawaii, 34 percent of residents have received at least one dose. Alabama has vaccinated the lowest proportion of its residents, at 25 percent.

Along with dangerous coronavirus variants that were identified in Britain, South Africa and Brazil, new mutations have continued to pop up in the United States, from California to New York to Oregon.

The shots will eventually win, scientists say, but because each infection gives the coronavirus a chance to evolve further, vaccinations must proceed as quickly as possible.

For now, however, cases are rising sharply in parts of the country, with some states offering a stark reminder that the pandemic is far from over. Yet again, governors across the country have lifted precautions like mask mandates and capacity limits on businesses.

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