Recently, US President Joe Biden outlined a bold and remarkable six-pronged plan to aggressively combat the coronavirus pandemic. Here is a summary of his announcement.
I. Increasing Vaccinated Population
- Mr. Biden, in an unprecedented show of presidential power, made it mandatory for all federal employees and federal contractors to be vaccinated.
- He also made vaccination mandatory for those who work in hospitals, home health care facilities, or other medical facilities, approximately 17 million health care workers.
- The President announced that the Department of Labor would develop a rule that affects roughly 80 million workers, requiring all private-sector businesses with more than 100 employees to make vaccination or weekly tests compulsory for their workforce.
- Mr. Biden appealed to those who run large entertainment venues like sports arenas, concert venues, and movie theaters to make vaccination or a negative test report mandatory, as a condition of entry.
II. Facilitating access to booster shots
The second part of the President’s plan promises easy access to booster shots after their authorization by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and recommendations by the CDC’s independent Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). A booster can provide the highest level of protection yet and will be available to those eligible right away at tens of thousands of sites across the country for free.
III. Keeping schools safe from the virus
The third part of Mr. Biden’s plan focuses on keeping schools safe. He decreed that around 300,000 educators in federal Head Start programs must be vaccinated and appealed governors to make vaccination mandatory for school teachers and staff. Schools are required to implement the safety measures like testing, masking, maintaining physical distancing, and adequate ventilation systems in order to prevent transmission and keep children safe from Covid-19 in schools.
IV. Increasing testing and continue wearing masks
According to the President, America failed to do enough Covid-19 testing from the start of the pandemic. So, to improve detection and control of the Delta variant, President Biden has taken steps to make testing more accessible, affordable, and convenient. He proposes to use the Defense Production Act to increase the production of rapid tests. Most probably by next week, at-home Rapid test kits will be available for sale at top retailers like Walmart, Amazon, and Kroger. President promises free testing at 10,000 pharmacies across the country to make testing available to every American regardless of their income. President hinted at stricter masking regulations and increased penalties for breaking the rules.
V. Promoting the economic recovery
President Biden’s plan endeavors to promote economic recovery by expanding Covid-19 economic injury disaster loan programs. Small businesses can now borrow up to $2 million, instead of $500,000, to keep their business afloat if Covid-19 impacts their sales.
VI. Improving response and treatment to the virus
President Biden, in his plan, assures increased deployment of medical personnel and military health team to the areas in the country that need help to control the spread of COVID-19. This plan also targets increasing the availability of recommended medicines. President announced that the distribution of monoclonal antibody treatments, which were found to reduce the risk of developing severe disease, will be increased to lessen the strain on medical facilities.
President Biden’s plan employs a scientific approach to control the adverse effects of the pandemic. This plan will ensure that more lives are saved in the months ahead while keeping schools operational and safe and protecting the American economy from lockdowns and damage.