As countries race to get vaccinations into the arms of their people, one country is dominating the rest of the field: Israel.
According to data collected by Our World in Data, Israel has administered the COVID vaccine at a per capita rate of nearly 25 per 100 people. This equates to just over 23% of the population having received at least one vaccine dose.
Leading the world
Americans have watched in horror as many state governments have mishandled the administration of the COVID vaccine. Most notably, New York, thanks to Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo's disastrous rollout plan, saw health care facilities forced to throw out expired doses.
Though only about 3% of the U.S. population has received the vaccine, not every state has been a disaster, as West Virginia, South Dakota, and North Dakota have led the way with above-average per capita vaccination rates.
But Israel has somehow avoided such disasters and is making even the most successful states in the U.S. look like failures by comparison.
And they're leaving the rest of the world in the dust.
In less than a month, the country has vaccinated nearly a quarter of its population. It has been delivering shots to nearly 150,000 people every day, Vox
reported, and though the nation created a priority list, it made it a practice from the beginning to make sure doses did not go to waste. In fact, the nation was so successful that the worry was about running out of doses, but Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's administration made a deal with Pfizer.
Over the past few weeks, the country delivered shots to about 150,000 people per day. Priority went to people over 60 and health workers; however, in an attempt to avoid wasting any shots that might spoil, other Israelis got the vaccine if they happened to know the right clinic or happened to be in the right place at the right time.
Israel's rapid campaign worked almost too well: The country soon began running low on doses, which threatened to slow the pace of new vaccinations. Israel also committed to reserving a second dose for everyone who received the first. Follow-up appointments are scheduled for 21 days after the first jab, often to the exact day, sometimes the hour.
But on January 7, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that the country had reached an agreement with Pfizer to deliver more vaccines, with the goal of inoculating all citizens over the age of 16 by the end of March. With more than 70 percent of people over 60 already vaccinated, Netanyahu said Sunday that the campaign would soon expand to include all people 50 and older, and strive for 170,000 inoculations each day.
Israel got the Pfizer deal by agreeing to share with the company and the World Health Organization the age, gender, and medical history of everyone getting the vaccination, as well as how well the vaccinations work and any side effects, Politico reported.
So how is the rest of the world doing? Well, not great.
Coming in second place, with a per 100 rate of 15.45, is the United Arab Emirates. Third is Bahrain at 6.44. And it only gets worse from there.
And there's a lot of work yet to go as a percentage of the population for every nation — even Israel.