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Biden unveils Covid-19 plan

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President Joe Biden’s first full day in office on Thursday focused on rolling out his national strategy to get the coronavirus pandemic under control and signing several executive actions, including ramping up vaccination supplies and requiring international travelers to provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test prior to traveling to the US.

“Our national strategy is comprehensive, it’s based on science, not politics. It’s based on truth, not denial, and it’s detailed,” Biden said, speaking from the White House. He said the 198-page plan is posted on WhiteHouse.gov.

Biden’s plan starts with a national vaccination campaign in order to meet the President’s goal of administering 100 million shots, which is enough to cover 50 million Americans with vaccines that require two doses, in his first 100 days in office. “We’re at Day 1,” Biden said.

He said the plan was developed with input from the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, among other advisers and experts. Fauci was at the event at the White House, along with Biden’s Covid czar Jeff Zients.

Biden said the American public would be “hearing a lot more from Dr. Fauci again, not from the President, but from the real genuine experts and scientists.” Former President Donald Trump sidelined and undermined his own medical experts as the pandemic raged across the country.

“We’re going to make sure they work free from political interference and that they make decisions strictly based on science and health care alone, science and health alone, not what the political consequences are,” Biden said.

The day after being sworn-in, Biden signed at least 10 executive orders, memorandums and directives focused on tackling the pandemic, which, as of Thursday afternoon, has claimed the lives of more than 408,000 Americans and infected more than 24 million in the US. Biden signed executive orders ramping up supplies for vaccination, testing and personal protective equipment and another boosting development of therapeutics to treat Covid-19.