WASHINGTON - More than 68% of United States active-duty service members have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, the Department of Defense announced Wednesday.
"As a department today, over 68% of our active duty service members have received at least one dose," Max Rose, senior adviser to the secretary of defense, told reporters at the Pentagon during a press conference.
"This is an amazing feat, considering that the majority of our people represent a younger and healthier demographic, as well as considering the complex global positioning of our forces and our DOD personnel in over 40 different countries," Rose continued.
According to Rose, the number represents thousands of military members who have "answered the call" to support vaccination efforts and get a shot themselves.
The DOD has supported delivering more than 17 million vaccines to Americans and an additional 4 million vaccines to DOD personnel, Rose continued.
The Biden administration is continuing its effort to vaccinate as many people as possible just days away from President Joe Biden’s goal to get shots in arms in 70% of American adults by the July 4th holiday.
As of Wednesday, 66.2% of American adults had received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to data by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
In late April, Biden said he would not rule out having members of the U.S. military get vaccinated against COVID-19 as a mandatory measure, but said requiring it would be "a tough call."
"I don’t know. I’m going to leave that to the military," Biden told NBC News in an interview broadcast.
"I’m not saying I won’t. I think you’re going to see more and more of them getting it," Biden continued. "And I think it’s going to be a tough call as to whether or not they should be required to have to get it in the military because you’re in such close proximity with other military personnel."
This story was reported from Los Angeles.