(NewsNation Now) — More than 25 states have fully vaccinated at least 50% of their adult population, data published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows.
This marks yet another milestone in the pandemic as restrictions continue to loosen as deaths and cases trending downward.
The states are Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, Virginia, Washington state and Wisconsin. Washington D.C. has also vaccinated at least 50% of its adult population.
“Across the country, cases of COVID-19, serious illness and loss of life are all down dramatically,” White House COVID-19 adviser Andy Slavitt said Friday. “And they can be brought down even further and the risk of a future wave in your community significantly reduced if we keep up the pace of vaccinations.”
The vaccination numbers as the CDC said last week that most people who have received the full course of shots and have no COVID-19 symptoms don’t need to be screened for the virus, even if exposed to someone infected.
Experts say the CDC guidance reflects a new reality in the epidemic after nearly a year in which testing was the primary weapon against the virus. Vaccines are now central to the response and have driven down hospitalizations and deaths dramatically.
While vaccinated people can still catch the virus, they face little risk of serious illness from it. And positive test results can lead to what many experts now say are unnecessary worry and interruptions at work, home and school, such as quarantines and shutdowns.
Biden earlier this month announced his administration’s new goal of 70% of American adults getting at least one vaccine dose and 160 million being fully vaccinated by July 4.
About 130 million people, or 39.2% of the U.S. population, have been fully inoculated with COVID-19 vaccines made by Pfizer Inc/ BioNTech SE, Moderna Inc and Johnson & Johnson, according to CDC data. 49.2% of the U.S. population, or 163.3 million adults had received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.