6.7 million COVID Vaccines Given in U.S. With 70% of Available Doses Unused

Nearly 6.7 million people have received COVID-19 vaccinations in the United States, although around 70 percent of available doses remain unused, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC.)

CDC data shows that 6,688,231 first doses have been administered, according to the latest available figures, while more than 22.1 million doses have been distributed around the country.

These figures refer to doses of both the Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines, which were both authorized for emergency use in December.

Among those who have received their first dose are nearly 700,000 high-risk people in long-term care facilities, according to the CDC. More than four million doses have been distributed to these facilities.

The agency said the reason for the large difference between the number of doses distributed and the number of people receiving their first doses was to be "expected" at this stage of the mass vaccination program.

This is because of several factors, including delays in the reporting of administered doses and the management of available stock by various jurisdictions and federal pharmacy partners.

The majority of vaccine doses so far have been administered to high-risk groups, such as frontline medical workers and people living in nursing homes.

Out of all U.S. states, Texas, the second largest, has administered the most first doses of the vaccine so far—618,298—according to the CDC. More than 1.8 million doses have been allocated to the state. States have received vaccine doses roughly in proportion to their populations.

The state that has administered the most first doses per 100,000 people is West Virginia. Its rate of vaccination is 4,867 per 100,000 people. The state is followed by South Dakota and North Dakota in this ranking.

Wyoming has administered the lowest number of first doses, although it also has the smallest population—numbering just over 580,000. The state with the lowest rate of vaccination is Georgia, with 1,122 first doses administered out of every 100,000 people.

In addition to the 50 states and District of Columbia, the federal government is also distributing vaccines doses to U.S. territories such as as Puerto Rico and Guam, some federal agencies, including the Department of Defense and Bureau of Prisons, and three small countries in the Pacific: Palau, Micronesia and the Marshall Islands.

The vaccine rollout has not gone as quickly as officials had hoped, with the U.S. missing the federal government's target of 20 million shots in arms by the end of 2020. By this point, only around 2.8 million Americans had received a COVID-19 vaccine.

"We agree that that number is lower than what we had hoped for," Moncef Slaoui, chief advisor of the U.S. government's Operation Warp Speed vaccination drive, said during a press conference. "We know that it should be better, and we're working hard to make it better."

man receives Moderna vaccine
A man receives a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination site at South Bronx Educational Campus, in the Bronx New York on January 10, 2021. KENA BETANCUR/AFP via Getty Images