The U.S. has secured enough doses of COVID-19 vaccine to inoculate the country’s adult population by the end of May, President Joe Biden said on Tuesday.
The announcement means that the country will achieve the mark of enough doses for all adult Americans two months earlier than previously planned. Biden said last month that there would be enough for all Americans by the end of July, while forecasts at the start of his presidency initially suggested that the country would reach the milestone at the end of August.
“We’re now on track to have enough vaccine supply for every adult in America by the end of May,” Biden said in remarks from the White House.
The President added that the Trump administration had failed to secure enough doses of FDA-authorized vaccines to cover the country’s population at all. The Trump administration passed up an opportunity from pharmaceutical giant Pfizer to order millions of additional doses.
At the time, it was unclear whether any inoculations beyond the two-shot Pfizer and Moderna mRNA vaccine would work.
“The prior administration had contacted for not nearly enough vaccine to cover all the adults in America,” Biden said. “We rectified that.”
The U.S. is now on track to have far more vaccine than would be necessary to inoculate every American, after the FDA issued emergency use authorization for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine on Saturday.
The Biden administration has flexed federal muscles in both the manufacturing and deployment of the shots, including a program announced on Tuesday that will see Merck produce COVID-19 vaccines created by its competitor J&J.