NEW YORK, Dec. 3 (Xinhua) -- U.S. COVID-19 vaccination reached the highest single-day total in over six months on Thursday, with at least six states having discovered cases of the Omicron variant, which had been labeled as a "variant of concern" by the World Health Organization.
Approximately 2.18 million doses were administered during the 24-hour period ending Thursday, according to data reported to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). White House COVID-19 data director Cyrus Shahpar said in a tweet the 24-hour total was the largest in over six months.
About half of the doses given on Thursday were booster shots, and almost a third were people getting their first dose of the vaccine, according to Shahpar, who advised that Omicron was a "cause for concern" and urged people to get vaccinated or receive their booster shots.
Friday afternoon, the director tweeted that "Just in: +1.90M doses reported admin(istered) over yesterday's total, including 475K newly vaccinated and 1.06M boosters," adding that "don't wait for Omicron to be reported in your area before taking action to get newly vaccinated or boosted (if eligible)."
About a dozen Omicron cases have been detected around the United States. Nebraska, New York and Hawaii were the latest states to announce infections, joining California, Minnesota and Colorado. Local leaders are warning that the variant is now spreading within some communities.
As of Friday afternoon, 234,743,864 people had received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, making up 70.7 percent of the whole U.S. population; fully vaccinated people stood at 198,211,641, accounting for 59.7 percent of the total. A total of 44,035,293 people, or 22.2 percent of the fully vaccinated group, had received booster shots, according to the CDC.