Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said more coronavirus infections are occurring among younger people in the U.S. partly because of spread in day care centers and at school sporting events, where social distancing and mask-wearing can get lax.
President Biden’s chief medical adviser told CNN that another factor is the presence of newer coronavirus variants, particularly one first discovered in the U.K. that is driving surges of cases nationwide.
Fauci also said that fewer older people are getting infected since they were among the first to be vaccinated, pointing out that more than 75% of people ages 65 and older have received at least one dose of vaccine.
“When you look at the entire population, there’s relatively more protection among older individuals as opposed to younger individuals,” Fauci said, CNN reported.
As of Thursday, the U.S. has administered roughly 171 million of its 225 million available vaccine doses, with 64 million Americans fully vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Earlier this week, President Biden moved up his vaccine eligibility deadline, calling for all Americans 16 and older to be eligible for vaccination by April 19.