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CDC projects sharp decline in COVID-19 cases by July

CDC projects decline in COVID-19 cases by July
CDC projects decline in COVID-19 cases by Jul... 02:24

There is new hope in the battle to beat COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is projecting the number of new cases could fall sharply by July. But it comes with a warning: Any drop could be delayed by a continued decline in vaccinations. 

"Although we are seeing progress in terms of decreased cases, hospitalizations and deaths, variants are a wild card that could reverse this progress that we have made and could set us back," said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky. 

This comes as Moderna announced Wednesday that early results from an ongoing clinical trial indicate a booster shot "should be protective against variants" first identified in South Africa and Brazil when taken in addition to its two-shot regimen. 

In California, where more than 30,000 people have been vaccinated, cases are the lowest they've since last April. But declining vaccination rates are threatening the new White House goal of 70% of all adults getting at least one shot by July. In response, the government is shifting focus from mass vaccination sites to a more targeted approach. 

"Something I'm often asked is, when will this pandemic be over and when can we go back to normal? The reality is, it all depends on the actions we take now," Walensky said. 

CVS announced Wednesday it will join at least three other national pharmacy chains offering walk-in vaccination appointments at each of its pharmacies by next week. 

There's also an effort to bring the vaccine directly to people in so-called pharmacy deserts. South of Los Angeles, there is a dense population, but no vaccination sites within a mile. So community leaders parked a pop-up vaccination clinic to help get shots in arms. 

"We have to come to the community. We can't wait for the community to come to us," said Cynthia Davis, an assistant professor at Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science.  

At Citi Field in New York, more than 100,000 shots have been administered. To encourage even more people to get vaccinated, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced fans can get vaccinated on game day at the gate, earning them a free ticket for a future game. 

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