Biden defends progress on COVID as weather delays 6M shots

first_img Previous articleWoman shot during protest against Myanmar coup diesNext articleSouthern cities hit hard by storms face new crisis: No water Digital AIM Web Support Biden defends progress on COVID as weather delays 6M shots Facebook By Digital AIM Web Support – February 19, 2021 WhatsApp Local NewsUS News Pinterest Pinterestcenter_img WhatsApp TAGS  Facebook Twitter Twitter PORTAGE, Mich. (AP) — President Joe Biden toured a state-of-the art coronavirus vaccine plant Friday, intent on showcasing progress even as extreme winter weather across the U.S. handed his vaccination campaign its first major setback, delaying shipment of about 6 million doses and causing temporary closures of inoculation sites in many communities. While acknowledging the weather is “slowing up the distribution,” Biden said at the Pfizer plant in Michigan that he believes “we’ll be approaching normalcy by the end of this year.” His speech melded a recitation of his administration’s accomplishments in its first month confronting the pandemic, a vigorous pitch for his $1.9 trillion COVID relief bill and criticism of his predecessor. The disruptions caused by frigid temperatures, snow and ice have left the White House and states scrambling to make up lost ground as three days’ worth of vaccine shipments were temporarily delayed. Even the president’s trip to see Pfizer’s largest plant was pushed back a day due to a storm affecting the nation’s capital. Before the trip, White House coronavirus response adviser Andy Slavitt said the federal government, states and local vaccinators are going to have to redouble efforts to catch up after the interruptions. The setback comes just as the vaccination campaign seemed to be on the verge of hitting its stride. All the backlogged doses should be delivered in the next several days, Slavitt said, still confident that the pace of vaccinations will recover. Biden has set a goal of administering 100 million shots in his administration’s first 100 days, and he said Friday that’s still on track and it’s only a beginning. He went on to say that by the end of July his administration can deliver 600 million doses for Americans. Still, Biden cautioned that timetable could change, citing the current weather delays and concerns about new strains of the virus as well as the possibility that production rates could fluctuate. “I believe we’ll be approaching normalcy by the end of this year,” he said. “God willing, this Christmas will be different than last, but I can’t make that commitment to you.” Taking a swipe at former President Donald Trump, whom he did not cite by name, Biden allowed that the previous administration shepherded the approval of two highly effective vaccines. But “it’s one thing to have a vaccine available, the problem was how to get to people’s arms.” The Pfizer plant Biden toured, near Kalamazoo, produces one of the two federally approved COVID-19 shots. Weather-related delays have affected distribution of both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Introducing Biden before the speech, Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla called his administration “a great ally” and cited a range of actions that have helped the company as it looked for ways to increase production. In a press release, the company said it has been shipping 5 million doses a week in the U.S. on average, and expects to more than double that by the end of March. Biden walked through an area of the plant called the “freezer farm,” which houses some 350 ultra-cold freezers, each capable of storing 360,000 doses of the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine. Double-masked, the president stopped to talk with some of the workers. The scene was a sharp contrast to the vibe across much of the country, where progress was on hold. Bad weather forced many injection sites to temporarily close, from Texas to New England, and held up shipments of needed doses. In Memphis, a city where some of the doses were stranded, the storm stymied 77-year-old Bill Bayne in his pursuit of his second dose. He got his first shot Jan. 29 and was told he’d hear back about the second sometime this week. With local vaccination sites shut down, no notification came. Bayne said the eight inches of snow outside his home is the most he’s seen in 50 years of living there. “I want that shot bad enough,” Bayne said. “I would’ve gotten there some way.” White House adviser Slavitt said the 6 million doses delayed won’t spoil and the vaccine is “safe and sound” under refrigeration. But as shipments resume and scale up, vaccinators in communities across the country are going to have to work overtime to get shots into arms. “We as an entire nation will have to pull together to get back on track,” Slavitt told reporters at the White House coronavirus briefing. Slavitt said about 1.4 million doses were being shipped Friday as the work of clearing the backlog begins. A confluence of factors combined to throw off the vaccination effort. First, shippers like FedEx, UPS and pharmaceutical distributor McKesson all faced challenges with snowed-in workers. Then, said Slavitt, road closures in many states kept trucks from delivering their assigned doses of vaccine. And finally, more than 2,000 vaccination sites were in areas with power outages. Still, the government is going ahead with plans to open five new mass vaccination centers, one in Philadelphia, and four others in the Florida cities of Miami, Orlando, Tampa and Jacksonville. The U.S. had administered an average of 1.7 million doses per day in the week that ended on Tuesday, evidence that the pace of the vaccination program was picking up. Now, the question is how long it will take to recover from the impact of the weather-related delays. The delays were so severe that Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker suggested he would explore sending his state’s national guard to collect doses from icebound shipping hubs in Memphis, Tennessee, and Louisville, Kentucky. The Virginia Department of Health reported that it was expecting delays on about 90% of its expected 120,000 doses this week and warned that delays could cascade into next week. In North Carolina, none of the more than 163,000 first and second doses of the Moderna vaccine scheduled to arrive this week have been delivered, the state health department said. Only a limited number of the nearly 127,000 expected Pfizer vaccines have been shipped. Oklahoma moved to reschedule vaccine clinics to this weekend, when it expects its 110,000 doses to be delivered, aiming to make up appointments from this week. ——— AP’s Suman Naishadham in Phoenix contributed to the report.last_img read more

CHDS Opens Sub-Regional Conference on Security in the Americas

first_imgBy Dialogo July 22, 2011 This conference is especially important for the Inter-American Defense System, the respective countries’ national security and the principals of national progress that guaranty democracy, due to alleged and hidden challenges that threatens society on all continents. There is hope in the meeting with Chile. An unfolding effect in the resolutions and recommendations to raise awareness among Latin American countries’ main politicians. Manly the responsible parties who make the policies for the public defense. With an introduction by Chilean Minister of National Defense Andrés Allamand, the Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies (CHDS) of the National Defense University, in Washington, D.C., opened its 2011 Sub-Regional Conference, the seventh in the series, in Santiago, Chile, on 20 July 2011. Under the heading “New Security Environment, New Defense Alternatives,” the forum brings together around 350 military personnel, academics, and civilians from Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Guatemala, Paraguay, Peru, the United States, Uruguay, and Venezuela. The event, sponsored by the National Academy of Political and Strategic Studies (ANEPE) of the Chilean Defense Ministry, has the aim of responding to the challenges defined at the Ninth Conference of Ministers of Defense of the Americas, held in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia, in November 2010. This opportunity “is especially relevant,” CHDS director Richard D. Downie emphasized, “because it enables us to bring together the political leaders who design policies, the military personnel who execute them, and the academics who study them in order to create a new reality.” The conference, which will continue until 22 July, is focused on three main topics: consolidating peace, confidence, security, and cooperation in the Americas; democracy, Armed Forces, security, and society; and cooperation in regional security and natural disasters. “Security is a task for everyone,” Allamand stressed in his opening speech. The minister also highlighted the importance of jointly addressing the topic of security, due to the borderless nature of the threats that states are facing today. “The dividing lines between internal and external security have been dissolving,” he affirmed. The event included the participation of former Colombian president Álvaro Uribe Vélez, who spoke about the new security environment and new defense alternatives. “We have the great challenge of building modern democracies,” he said, and he emphasized that democracies depend on their security policies, on the freedoms of their societies, and on states established on the basis of independent institutions, both for their progress and for their decay. As part of his speech, Uribe enumerated the enormous riches of the Latin American people and also mentioned the great social chasms that need to be closed in order to create these democracies. last_img read more

Vaughn Fischer

first_imgVaughn Ambrose Fischer, was born on January 14, 2015 to Brad and Shelly Schneider Fischer. Vaughn was a student at All Saints Preschool and a member of All Saints Parish. Vaughn was all boy, he loved hockey, Nerf guns, his dogs Ivy and JoJo, rabbit hunting, tractors, cowboys, and aggravating his big sis Carmen. On April 8, 2020, Vaughn passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by his family, after a nine month battle with pediatric brain cancer. Vaughn fought like a warrior until the end. In his 5 short years, he taught us all how to live life to the fullest and us each to be a better person.In addition to his parents, and his big sister Carmen, who all loved him dearly, he is survived by maternal grandparents Dan and Kris Schneider of Sunman, paternal grandparents Bob and Betty Fischer of St. Leon. Maternal great grandmothers, Dolores Spaeth Pulskamp and Alberta Schneider Fecher. Aunts and uncles Stu and Katie Schneider, Ted and Jaime Schneider, and Billy and Katie Enneking. A host of little girl cousins, Ava, Claire, Gwen, and Irah Schneider, and Kenya and Taya Enneking. Vaughn was preceeded in death by his Aunt Kendra Fischer.Vaughn was fortified by the sacraments of Baptism, First Communion, Confirmation and Last Rights of the Catholic Church. Services will be private with interment at St. Joseph’s campus in St. Leon.The Schneider and Fischer families thank everyone for the continued thoughts, prayers, and support during this difficult journey. In lieu of flowers and gifts, we ask that you create a special family memory of your own. For those that wish to contribute to a memorial, they can be made for Masses, the Ellise Brown Foundation at 24665 Ester Ridge Rd Sunman, IN 47041, or Olivia Rebecca Waggoner Memorial Endowment at Franklin County Community Foundation 527 Main St., Brookville, IN 47012. Please visit to offer online condolences.last_img read more

Fer close to QPR switch

first_img The 24-year-old midfielder impressed after moving to Carrow Road from FC Twente last summer, although was unable to help the club avoid relegation. Fer went on to feature for the Netherlands at the World Cup and came off the bench in Norwich’s 3-0 defeat of Watford on Saturday. Leroy Fer is undergoing a medical at QPR ahead of £7million move from Norwich, Press Association Sport understands. Canaries boss Neil Adams downplayed an impending move ahead of Tuesday’s Championship fixture against Blackburn, but Press Association Sport understands that the midfielder’s exit in imminent. Fer is believed to be undergoing a medical at QPR on Tuesday morning after the club’s agreed a fee in the region of £7million. The Dutchman is set to sign a three-year deal at Loftus Road, where he could soon be joined by Chile international Eduardo Vargas. The Napoli striker is attracting interest from across Europe and, having signed compatriot Mauricio Isla, the Hoops are hoping to get a deal over the line potentially the next 48 hours. center_img Press Associationlast_img read more