President Joe Biden on Thursday announced completion of a deal to purchase an additional 200 million coronavirus vaccine doses, fulfilling an agreement he outlined two weeks ago.
“We’ve now purchased enough vaccine supplies to vaccinate all Americans,” Biden said during a visit to the National Institutes of Health. “Now we’re working to get those vaccines into the arms of millions of people.”
In addition to finalizing contracts with Pfizer and Moderna for 100 million more doses each that will be delivered by the end of July, Biden said 100 million other doses that were supposed to arrive in June will now be delivered in May.
“That’s a month faster,” Biden said. “That means lives will be saved.”
To fulfil his promise of administering 100 million vaccine shots in his first 100 days, Biden has taken steps both to increase production of vaccines and improve vaccination rates.
Biden said Thursday that goal will be surpassed.
“My predecessor, to be very blunt about it, did not do his job,” Biden said. “We won’t have everything fixed for a while. But we’re going to fix it.”
Administration officials have said that the vaccine supply was far lower than they were led to believe before Biden took office.
“What I was upset with was not having all the facts that were available to the last outfit,” Biden said while touring a lab at NIH before delivering his full remarks. “We were under the distinct impression there were significantly more vaccines available to begin to be distributed.”