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President Joe Biden is set to announce a new program Tuesday offering free Uber and Lyft rides to COVID-19 vaccination sites.
The program is part of Biden’s additional efforts to get more Americans vaccinated against the coronavirus and to reach his goal of having administered at least one dose of the vaccine to 70% of the adult population by July 4, the White House said in a statement.
“The President will join a bipartisan group of the nation’s governors to discuss creative and innovative ways they are working to get people in their states vaccinated and announce additional private and federal resources to help their efforts,” the White House says.
How will the program work?
Ride-sharing companies Uber and Lyft will “promote rides” through their apps to tens of thousands of COVID-19 vaccination sites, the White House says.
“People will be able to simply select a vaccination site near them, follow simple directions to redeem their ride, and then get a ride to take them to and from a nearby vaccination site free of charge,” it says.
The feature will be available within the next two weeks It will run through July 4.
Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a statement that “vaccines are our best hope to beat this pandemic.”
“We are honored to deepen our previous global commitments, and partner with the White House and Lyft to provide free rides to vaccination sites across the US,” Khosrowshahi said. “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.”
Other efforts to increase vaccination rates
Biden’s administration will launch partnerships with federal pharmacy partners and some community colleges to open on-site vaccination clinics for students, staff and the community.
“These community colleges will work to get word out to students, staff, and local communities to make use of these clinics, especially for students who are on or nearby campus this summer,” the White House says.
The administration will also provide funding to state, local and tribal governments for vaccine-related outreach.
“State, local and community leaders can use FEMA assistance to fund the cost of in-person, phone, and online community engagement – including personnel and other costs,” the White House says.
As of Tuesday, more than 152 million people in the U.S. have received at least one dose of the vaccine and more than 115 million are fully vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.