U.S. markets closed
  • S&P 500

    3,811.15
    -18.19 (-0.48%)
     
  • Dow 30

    30,932.37
    -469.64 (-1.50%)
     
  • Nasdaq

    13,192.35
    +72.92 (+0.56%)
     
  • Russell 2000

    2,201.05
    +0.88 (+0.04%)
     
  • Crude Oil

    61.66
    -1.87 (-2.94%)
     
  • Gold

    1,733.00
    -42.40 (-2.39%)
     
  • Silver

    26.70
    -0.98 (-3.56%)
     
  • EUR/USD

    1.2088
    -0.0099 (-0.81%)
     
  • 10-Yr Bond

    1.4600
    -0.0580 (-3.82%)
     
  • GBP/USD

    1.3921
    -0.0091 (-0.65%)
     
  • USD/JPY

    106.5500
    +0.3200 (+0.30%)
     
  • BTC-USD

    46,603.19
    +1,651.61 (+3.67%)
     
  • CMC Crypto 200

    912.88
    -20.25 (-2.17%)
     
  • FTSE 100

    6,483.43
    -168.53 (-2.53%)
     
  • Nikkei 225

    28,966.01
    -1,202.26 (-3.99%)
     
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Coronavirus update: Biden calls for 100 million vaccinations, $121 billion for health care to fight COVID-19

Anjalee Khemlani
·Senior Reporter
·3 min read
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

President-elect Joe Biden released a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 response plan on Thursday evening, setting goals for his first 100 days in office, including a call for 100 million vaccinations by then.

“This will be one of the most challenging operational efforts we have ever undertaken as a nation,” Biden said.

The country has currently administered more than 11 million doses, including first and second doses, according to the CDC, but has not reached 1 million doses per day — which is necessary to reach or exceed Biden’s goal.

Biden’s plan includes launching community vaccination centers around the country and deploying mobile vaccination units to hard-to-reach areas. “The Biden Administration will take action to ensure all people in the United States — regardless of their immigration status — can access the vaccine free-of-charge and without cost-sharing,” according to the transition team’s statement.

Currently only Pfizer (PFE)/BioNTech (BNTX) and Moderna (MRNA) have received authorization for their vaccines, but Operation Warp Speed chief adviser Moncef Slaoui has said that Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) is next in line to receive authorization. The company’s one-dose vaccine holds greater hope for the country as it relieves the health-care system of ultra-cold storage burdens as well as the tracking of second dose administrations.

President-elect Joe Biden speaks about the COVID-19 pandemic during an event at The Queen theater, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021, in Wilmington, Del. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
President-elect Joe Biden speaks about the COVID-19 pandemic during an event at The Queen theater, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021, in Wilmington, Del. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Among other efforts focused on economic recovery, the Biden plan envisions at least $121 billion for health care. That includes $20 billion for a national vaccination plan, $50 billion for a testing expansion plan, $30 billion for the Disaster Relief Fund to replenish supplies and activate the National Guard, as well as $10 billion for domestic manufacturing through the Defense Production Act, which President Donald Trump invoked early in the pandemic, though efforts eventually dwindled.

In a 180-degree swing from the Trump administration, Biden also proposed $11 billion for international response efforts.

The proposal also includes undefined sums to expand the public health workforce, address health disparities, support for long-term care facilities — which currently account for 40% of COVID-19 deaths — and investing in COVID-19 treatments.

In addition, the plan calls for providing emergency paid time off for people who contract the virus, which would affect more than 75% of Americans who earn less than $73,000 annually, by providing a maximum paid leave benefit of $1,400 per week.

Biden’s plan did not mention a face mask mandate, but did include production of masks for frontline health care workers.

In addition to the funding proposal, Biden also revealed that Former U.S. Food and Drug Administration Commissioner David Kessler will take Slaoui’s place leading Operation Warp Speed. Slaoui has already submitted his resignation, which includes a 30-day notice that results in him continuing his briefly continuing his role after Biden takes office.

“We are in a race against time, and we need a comprehensive strategy to quickly contain this virus. The individuals announced today will bolster the White House’s COVID-19 Response team and play important roles in carrying out our rescue plan and vaccination program,” Biden said in a statement.

Biden took no questions following the announcement of his plan.

More from Anjalee:

Read the latest financial and business news from Yahoo Finance.

Follow Yahoo Finance on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Flipboard, SmartNews, LinkedIn, YouTube.

Follow Anjalee on Twitter @AnjKhem.