WASHINGTON - Nearly two-thirds of all Americans have at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
This equates to more than 220 million people — 66.5% — with at least one shot against the deadly coronavirus.
In addition, 79.6% of adults and 77.7% of Americans who are at least 12 years old have received a dose of the shot, according to the data.
A member of staff uses a needle and a phial of Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to prepare a dose at a vaccination center (Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP via Getty Images)
Meanwhile, 111 million Americans remain unvaccinated, a number that includes children under the age of 12 who are not yet eligible to get the shot.
But, vaccines for 28 million American children are already one step closer to being authorized for emergency use after an advisory panel at the Food and Drug Administration voted in support of the Pfizer vaccine for kids ages 5-11 Tuesday.
If the FDA authorizes the kid-size doses, there’s still another step before the shots can : Next week, the CDC will have to decide whether to recommend the shots and which children should get them.
Kids could begin vaccinations early next month, with the first kids in line to be fully protected by Christmas.
Nationally, cases and hospitalizations from COVID-19 continue to fall, as states continue to enforce restrictions including mask-wearing and as more people become inoculated against the deadly virus.
The U.S. is averaging about 73,000 new cases per day, dramatically lower than the 173,000 recorded on Sept. 13.
And the number of Americans in the hospital with COVID-19 has plummeted by about half to around 47,000 since early September.
These tumbling COVID-19 case counts have some schools and businesses around the U.S. considering relaxing their mask rules, but deaths nationally have still been ticking up over the past few weeks.
Troubling indicators include the onset of cold weather, which sends people indoors. Also, many rural areas with lower vaccination rates are seeing continued spikes.
This story was reported from Los Angeles. The Associated Press contributed.