FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Media Relations
Statement from APHA Executive Director Georges C. Benjamin, MD
“Today, we celebrate a moment that seemed worlds away last spring when WHO declared the novel coronavirus outbreak a pandemic
Since Dec. 14, when the first American received one of the new COVID-19 vaccines, the United States has officially administered 100 million doses nationwide, a mark of enormous progress. In turn, we express our deepest thanks and admiration to the scientists, researchers, public health practitioners and other front-line health workers who made — and continue to make — this unprecedented vaccine campaign a success.
I also want to applaud the Biden administration’s aggressive and strategic approach to expediting future vaccine deliveries, with the possibility of administering 3 million doses a day poised to become a reality.
However, despite this great news, major inequities in vaccine access continue to persist. People of color remain significantly left behind in vaccinations efforts, and some states’ recent decisions to rollback pandemic safety measures, such as mask mandates, needlessly threaten the safety of workers and people who are not yet immunized.
A return to more normal times is within reach. But to keep heading in that direction, we must continue listening to science and working to overcome inequitable barriers to vaccination. In the meantime, I urge all Americans to wear a mask, practice physical distancing, wash your hands and get vaccinated when it’s your turn.”
The American Public Health Association champions the health of all people and all communities. We are the only organization that combines a nearly 150-year perspective, a broad-based member community and the ability to influence federal policy to improve the public’s health. Learn more at www.apha.org.