HOUSTON — Across the country, COVID-19 vaccine doses are not easy to find.
"Nationally we're not doing very well," infectious disease and vaccine expert Dr. Peter Hotez said.
Hotez said shots aren't going into arms fast enough.
President Joe Biden's administration has pledged to vaccinate 100 million people in the first 100 days.
"We need to ramp up to three million Americans a day to reach three-fourths of the population by the summer," Hotez said. "We're only at a third of the rate."
Hotez said vaccinations need to ramp up now as cases show a small decline nationally and in parts of Texas.
"My biggest concern is complacency that somehow they think 100 million over 100 days is adequate," Hotez said. "It's not good. It's not adequate. It's too low a bar. We need to be at 100 million immunizations per month to get to our target."
Watch the full interview with Hotez below:
Houston and Harris County have proven they can speed up vaccinations, but supply remains a question mark. And Hotez said there's a long way to go if Houston wants to reach herd immunity by late summer.
"That's 1.2 million immunizations per month, divided by 30 days, it gets to 40,000 a day," Hotez said. "That's a really high bar and I don't think we're close to that at this point."
Just as important is equity in distribution to make sure the most vulnerable populations in all communities have access to the vaccine.
"It's got to be streamlined and simplified," Hotez said. "You shouldn't need to be computer literate or know anything about passcodes to sign up for vaccinations. We need to make sure anyone who wants a vaccine can access one. Just like they did in Israel."
Hotez says Israel's mass vaccination plan should be a guiding example here in the U.S. Success will depend on how soon the Biden team can work to ramp up vaccine production.
"We need a greater supply of vaccine," Hotez said. "We will not do this with the mRNA vaccines alone."
That supply could receive a boost in just a few weeks if as expected the FDA authorizes a third COVID-19 vaccine.