'Pandemic of the unvaccinated': US jab rollout slows as Covid cases hit 100,000 a day

ITV News Global Security Edit Rohit Kachroo reports on the 'pandemic of the unvaccinated' facing the USA

Coronavirus cases are surging again in the United States as the country struggles to vaccinate the remainder of its population.

Infections are averaging more than 100,000 a day - almost a ten-fold increase from 11,000 cases a day in late June.

It comes as the Delta variant continues to spread across America - and it appears those with lower vaccination rates are suffering the most.

Despite the US having vaccinated 70% of its entire population, jab uptake in some states is lower than 40%.

Florida, which has vaccinated around 49% of its population and Louisiana, which has jabbed just 37%, are facing their highest ever hospitalisation rates.

Who is vaccinated in the US and where:

Vaccine hesitancy and reluctancy as well as the spread of misinformation continues to play a part in uptake in the vaccine.

Almost 500 cases of Covid-19 have been reported in people who congregated in Milwaukee's Deer District to celebrate baseball's Milwaukee Bucks win, during the NBA playoffs last month.

The night is now being seen as a public health failure, despite the sporting success.

One hospital patient, who is receiving oxygen, said: "I was strongly against the vaccine just because we're a strong Conservative family."

Southern states in the US appear to have the lowest vaccine uptake, according to the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.

Mississippi has the lowest - with around 35% of residents having received at least one dose.

In Baltimore, more than 300,000 people have been vaccinated and at least 170,000 remain, but it continues to be a slow process.

Misinformation about the vaccination continues to be believed and then repeated, spreading further.

'I hear a lot of 'we'll wait, I'm going to give it a year'...I don't know if we're going to get that time', hairdresser in Baltimore tells ITV News about what she hears from customers about the Covid vaccine

Zarif Myles, who's 23-years-old, incorrectly asserted to ITV News: "If I want to have a child and I had this vaccine, the chances of me being infertile is a 50/50 balance on the scale.

"There's still so much about this vaccine we do not know still and I would rather not be a guinea pig."

There is no evidence that having the Covid vaccine causes infertility in the short or long-term, the World Health Organization has said.

Dr. Katherine O'Brien from WHO said: "The vaccines we give cannot cause infertility."

"This is a rumour that has gone around about many different vaccines and there's no truth to the rumour. There's no vaccine that causes infertility," Dr. O'Brien added.

Meanwhile a hairdresser in Baltimore has been trained to promote the vaccinations to her customers.

Dina Tillman said that giving her customers a choice about the vaccine "is all she can really do."

She said: "At this point in the pandemic there are very few people who you know, who haven't had it, haven't had Covid or haven't experienced somebody that they know who has Covid and has lost someone."

"People of colour have been tested on and there is a history of that and there is a fear there."

She added: "I hear a lot of 'well we're going to sit-back and we're going to wait until everybody else is good, I'm going to give it a year, I'm going to give it a year-and-a-half', and it's like ok I get it - at the same time, I don't know if we're going to get that time."

"It's definitely sad to know that we know there are so many people that do not want to receive the vaccine but at lease they'll have the option," she said.

The situation has prompted President Joe Biden to call the current situation a "pandemic of the unvaccinated".