Health experts lament that many of the deaths in the United States were preventable by way of the vaccine, which became available in mid-December a year ago and was open to all adults by mid-April of this year.

More than 200,000 lives were lost after the vaccine became practically available, according to the Associated Press.

Dr Chris Beyrer, an epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, said:

Almost all the people dying are now dying preventable deaths.

And that’s because they’re not immunised. And you know that, God, it’s a terrible tragedy.”

When the vaccine was first rolled out, the country’s death toll stood at about 300,000. It hit 600,000 in mid-June and 700,000 on 1 October.

The number of deaths, as compiled by Johns Hopkins University, is about equal to the population of Atlanta and St. Louis combined, or Minneapolis and Cleveland put together. It is roughly equivalent to how many Americans die each year from heart disease or stroke.

About 200 million Americans are fully vaccinated, or just over 60% of the population. That is well short of what scientists say is needed to keep the virus in check.

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