Officials say the U.S. is trying to help India deal with its coronavirus surge, which is straining that country’s health care system amid a record number of infections.
Watch the briefing in the video player above.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the Biden administration’s top medical adviser on the pandemic, says the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is working with its counterpart agency in India to provide technical support and assistance.
India set another global record of daily infections for a second straight day with 332,730 cases. Hospitals officials are using social media, pleading with the Indian government to replenish their oxygen supplies.
“It is a dire situation that we’re trying to help in any way we can,” Fauci said at the White House coronavirus briefing. “They have a situation there where there are variants that have arisen. We have not yet fully characterized the variants and the relationship between the ability of the vaccines to protect. But we’re assuming, clearly, that they need vaccines.”
White House coronavirus coordinator Jeff Zients says the U.S. is “committed to sharing vaccine supply” and “as our confidence around our supply increases, we will explore those options.”
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky also provided an update on U.S. vaccination efforts, saying 66 percent of the U.S. population over 65 is now fully vaccinated.
“We are well on our way to have one of our most vulnerable populations fully protected against this deadly virus, and that is a reason to celebrate,” she said.
Walensky also provided results of a study published this week by CDC scientists on the effects of COVID-19 vaccines on pregnant women. Walensky said study showed there were no safety concerns for women vaccinated in the third trimester, and no safety concerns for their babies, too.
“As such, CDC recommends that pregnant people receive the COVID-19 vaccine,” Walensky said.