Now that vaccines are becoming more widely available, we have a genuine shot at being able to move into a new normal sooner rather than later. For some though, simply getting to a vaccination site can be an obstacle unto itself. To help combat that problem, the Biden Administration has partnered with Uber and Lyft to provide free rides to vaccination sites.
According to CBS News, the initiative will start in two weeks and will run until July 4. The Biden administration is hoping to have 70 percent of the population receive at least one dose of the vaccine by the July 4th holiday. So far, the CDC reports that 46.2 percent of the population has received one dose, with 35.1 percent of the population being fully vaccinated (ya boy included, ayyyy).
“Vaccines are our best hope to beat this pandemic and soon everyone in America will be able to take a free Uber to get their shot,” Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a statement. “This is a proud moment for me, for Uber, and for our country. More and more Americans continue to get vaccinated every day — let’s keep moving forward, together.”
Uber previously pledged to give 10 million free rides to vaccine sites back in December. It’s still unclear how much this initiative will cost overall. The announcement comes as the Food and Drug Administration has recently approved the Pfizer vaccine for children ages 12-15. The White House also announced on Tuesday that it would be working with colleges and universities to ensure students and faculty receive vaccinations.
While vaccinations have continued to rise, there have still been equity issues in terms of who has and hasn’t received the vaccine. Transportation is one major barrier to entry, and I don’t blame anyone who may not want to take public transportation in the midst of a public health crisis. Hopefully, this initiative will allow folks who may not live in areas with nearby vaccination sites the ability to protect themselves from the virus.
If you need help finding a vaccination appointment near you, here’s a lovely tool from the CDC. All you need to do is enter your zip code and you’ll be provided a list of locations in your area. So as always stay safe, wash your hands, and get vaccinated if you can.