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CVS: Demand for COVID-19 vaccinations drops 30 percent

The Hill logo The Hill 5/4/2021 John Bowden
a person walking down a street in front of a store: CVS: Demand for COVID-19 vaccinations drops 30 percent © istock CVS: Demand for COVID-19 vaccinations drops 30 percent

CVS Health says that demand for COVID-19 vaccines at its locations around the country has fallen by nearly a third in recent days as U.S. officials increasingly point to vaccine hesitancy as a roadblock to herd immunity.

The Wall Street Journal reported that CVS CEO Karen Lynch made the comments Tuesday on an earnings call.

The Hill has reached out to CVS for confirmation.

"We have kind of passed the wave of people who really wanted to get it and who signed up," Lynch said on Tuesday. "There is a part of the population that says, 'I'm only going to get it if it's easy and convenient and if I happen to be in a place where I can get it.' There are other populations where people are just afraid."

The company has started offering walk-in appointments to encourage further vaccinations and to compete with rival pharmacy chains. On Tuesday's earnings call, Lynch said that nearly 10 percent of new CVS customers who come in for a COVID-19 vaccine end up filing another, unrelated prescription with the pharmacy chain.

"Vaccinated customers are more actively shopping in CVS locations," she added, pointing to a surge of business around the vaccine appointments.

The slowdown in the nation's vaccination rate has worried some health professionals, who have warned publicly that the U.S. will continue to see large outbreaks of the virus until herd immunity is reached.

Nearly two dozen states did not order the full allotment of vaccines available to them this week from the federal government, according to a CBS analysis.

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