New data from the Centers for Disease Control has revealed that just 3.5 percent of Americans opted to receive the latest Covid booster shot despite the Biden administration urging Americans 60 years of age and older, as well as those who are immunocompromised, to vaccinate themselves against a “tripledemic” of the latest Covid strain, the flu, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).
The lack of demand for the new vaccine has pharmaceutical giants such as Pfizer recording losses, with much of its stock having to be thrown out.
According to the CDC, just 7 percent of adults and 2 percent of children in the United States got inoculated against the recent strains of Covid, a stark decrease from the initial vaccine rollout.
Polling shows that those numbers aren't likely to get much higher in the coming months and years, with 40 percent of Americans saying they probably or definitely won't get another Covid shot, and a similar percentage saying the same when asked whether they will vaccinate their children.
As PBS reports, despite the fact that Covid deaths and hospitalizations are lower this year than in the previous three years of the virus' existence, an expert called the latest vaccination numbers “abysmal.”
In June, the Biden administration called on vaccine manufacturers Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Novovax to make new Covid vaccines.
In an interview with the New York Times, Boston Children's Hospital vaccine program director and Food and Drug Administration adviser Dr. Ofer Levy called the availability of vaccines against RSV, Covid, and the flu a “godsend” for vulnerable Americans. He noted that tens of thousands die every year as the result of viral infections.
Despite their efforts, fewer Americans have sought a fresh dose of the vaccine due in large part to the prevalence of previous vaccinations and infections, which have led to milder cases for many. Other reasons that may be influencing their decisions include the fact that unlike before, the jabs are no longer free, though they may still be covered under some insurance policies.