Five states — Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, and Wyoming — have not yet administered at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccines to half of their residents, according to CDC data, posing a roadblock to the Biden administration.
As The Associated Press first reported Saturday, the worst vaccination rate in the country is in Mississippi where just about 36% of the state population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
The Centre Daily Times reported Saturday that officials in Mississippi have in recent months turned away more than 870,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine from the federal government due to waning demand from state residents. Unwanted doses have gone to other states and into a national pool, according to the report.
About 36% of the population in Alabama has received at least one dose of the vaccine. Dr. Karen Landers, Alabama’s deputy health officer, told the Associated Press that the state would not reach the president’s target but said “that does not deter us from encouraging people to get the vaccine.”
Just over 40% of people in Tennessee are at least partially vaccinated against COVID-19, according to state data.
According to the CDC, 52% of all people in the US have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Just under 43% of Americans are fully vaccinated against the disease.
States across the US have introduced vaccine lotteries, gun giveaways, free beer, and other incentives to encourage their residents to get vaccinated.