Breaking News
Get Actionable Insights with InvestingPro+: Start 7 Day FREE Trial Register here
Investing Pro 0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your Investing.com experience. Save up to 40% More details

'We have more work to do,' Biden says, pledges more COVID tests

CoronavirusDec 27, 2021 11:22PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
2/2 © Reuters. People queue for a COVID-19 test in Times Square as the Omicron coronavirus variant continues to spread in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., December 26, 2021. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly 2/2

By Trevor Hunnicutt and Susan Heavey

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Joe Biden on Monday pledged to ease a shortage of COVID-19 tests as the Omicron variant threatened to overwhelm hospitals and stifle travel plans as it spreads across the United States this holiday week.

"Seeing how tough it was for some folks to get a test this weekend shows that we have more work to do," Biden said as he joined a call with the administration's COVID-19 response team and state governors. "It's clearly not enough."

Biden said his administration's steps include using the Defense Production Act to boost at-home test manufacturing and making it easier to use the Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL) search engine to find a nearby testing location.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said it was shortening the recommended time for isolation for Americans with COVID-19 to five days, as long as they show no symptoms, from its previous guidance of 10 days.

U.S. and state officials are bracing for a wave of more cases following the Christmas holiday, with hospitalizations ticking up and New Year celebrations yet to come.

Separately Anthony Fauci, the top U.S. infectious disease official, urged people to avoid large New Year's gatherings.

Rising cases snarled air travel over the Christmas weekend, with thousands of flights canceled as flight crews contracted the virus. Curtailed cruises and limited availability of testing crimped other plans as the more transmissible variant took hold.

On Monday, U.S. airlines canceled nearly 1,000 flights, the fourth straight day of cancellations. Travel-related stocks fell.

Over the last seven days, the average number of new cases has surged 55% to an average of over 205,000 new infections per day, according to a Reuters tally.

The number of hospitalized COVID patients has risen 3% over the same period. Overall in December, the average number of new cases has risen 143% and hospitalizations climbed 31%.

Biden warned governors that the spike in cases would probably overwhelm some hospitals, stretching staff and equipment like ventilators, particularly in areas where fewer people are vaccinated.

He declined to answer a reporter's question about whether he endorses a vaccine mandate for domestic air travel, another step officials have discussed.

As Biden departed Washington for his home state of Delaware, he pledged cooperation with governors and said he had offered them any needed additional resources.

"They want to know what we think is going to happen," he said.

For New Year's Eve on Friday, officials say people who are vaccinated can safely gather with families, but larger celebrations are riskier.

"When we are talking about a New Year's Eve party ... I would recommend strongly stay away from that this year. There will be other years to do that, but not this year," Fauci, Biden's chief medical adviser, told CNN.

"We really still need to be extremely careful," he said separately on MSNBC.

Last week, Biden announced reinforcements to bolster hospitals and testing, but some healthcare experts say that effort is too little, too late.

Peter Hotez, dean of Baylor College of Medicine's National School of Tropical Medicine, said problems were exacerbated by issues such as shortages of testing and healthcare workers.

"You put all those things together into the mix and we have a very dangerous situation coming now in the country in the next couple of weeks," he told MSNBC on Sunday.

'We have more work to do,' Biden says, pledges more COVID tests
 

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
Post also to:
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
Comments (3)
William Smith
William Smith Dec 28, 2021 7:17PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Joe promised to have Covid under control and basically behind us in a year. So we hit record cases in the US today and the press praises him for being so worthless.
Bob Collins
Bob Collins Dec 28, 2021 9:10AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Let’s. Go. Brandon.
Jose Cabreja
Jose Cabreja Dec 28, 2021 12:45AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
the covid19 test should be tested to see if it's + like the HIV test in the 80s giving false + to ppl just to cause chaos.. wonder what Fauci was up to in the 80s🤣🤣
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's Investing.com's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email