Tuesday, January 18, 2022
HomeHealthExtra Masks, COVID Checks, and Troops to Battle Omicron

Extra Masks, COVID Checks, and Troops to Battle Omicron


Jan. 13, 2022 — President Joe Biden introduced Thursday the U.S. authorities will make free, upgraded face masks out there for ordering on-line beginning subsequent week.

As well as, he’s ordering 500 million extra fast COVID-19 checks to satisfy future demand and deploying extra army groups to assist overwhelmed hospitals in hardest-hit states.

These actions are a part of a “whole-of-government” response to the surge in COVID-19 circumstances and hospitalizations related to the Omicron variant.

Upgraded Masks

Biden’s plan goals to make getting upgraded masks simpler for People.

“I’ve taken each motion I can as president to require folks to put on masks in federal buildings and on airplanes and trains,” the president mentioned. Nonetheless, “I do know that for some People, a masks just isn’t at all times reasonably priced or handy to get.”

With that in thoughts, subsequent week, the White Home will announce how folks can order high-quality masks, together with N95s, on-line, at no cost, on a brand new web site.

Biden estimated that about one-third of People say they by no means put on a masks, a statistic he is hoping to alter.

The president additionally acknowledged the pandemic fatigue many individuals have.

“All of us want that we might lastly be accomplished with carrying masks, I get it,” he mentioned. “However they’re a extremely essential software to cease the unfold, particularly [of] the extremely transmittable Omicron variant.”

One Billion Checks

Within the 10-minute handle, Biden additionally introduced plans to order 500 million extra at-home fast COVID-19 checks to satisfy demand. The order comes on high of the five hundred million checks the federal government already ordered.

Doing the maths, the president famous the present and future provide means there can be a billion checks “being acquired to ship to your houses at no cost.”

Biden additionally identified that fast at-home checks weren’t out there when he took workplace. In distinction, “we’ll have over 375 million at-home fast checks in January alone. That is an enormous leap,” he mentioned.

Within the meantime, his administration will work with on-line retailers to make extra checks out there. Additionally, for any American who needs a take a look at instantly, the Federal Emergency Administration Company is including extra free, in-person testing websites nationwide.

Extra Army Backup

“I am saying our subsequent deployment of six extra federal medical groups,” Biden mentioned. These reinforcements embrace greater than 120 army medical personnel being despatched to hard-hit states, together with Michigan, New York, New Jersey, Ohio, and Rhode Island.

These army personnel will be a part of different groups already in motion.

Since Thanksgiving, over 800 army and different federal emergency personnel have been deployed to 24 states, tribes, and territories, Biden famous. The numbers included greater than 350 army docs, nurses, and medics to assist overwhelmed hospital employees. As well as, greater than 14,000 Nationwide Guard members are already deployed to assist well being care staff are in 49 states.

Vaccination Stays High Precedence

Getting extra People vaccinated and boosted stays a precedence, notably throughout the Omicron surge.

“Proper now, each vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals are testing constructive. However what occurs after that would not be extra completely different,” Biden mentioned. “If vaccinated folks take a look at constructive, they’re overwhelmingly have both no signs in any respect or they’ve gentle signs.”

In distinction, when an unvaccinated particular person checks constructive, they’re greater than 17 instances extra prone to get hospitalized, he mentioned.

“So long as we’ve tens of thousands and thousands of people that won’t get vaccinated, we will have full hospitals and useless deaths. They’re crowding the hospitals, leaving little room for anybody else who may need a coronary heart assault, automobile accident, or any harm in any respect,” Biden mentioned.

One shiny spot to date with the Omicron surge is, regardless of the leap in case and hospitalization numbers, he mentioned, “deaths are down dramatically from final winter.”

Uniting Towards a Frequent Enemy

Biden mentioned America will “get via this when everyone does their half, regardless of the place you reside, regardless of your political social gathering.”

Additional acknowledging the political divide influencing COVID-19 response and numbers, he mentioned: “We have got a struggle this collectively. We have started working collectively. Not towards one another.”

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