Biden will instruct states to make all adults eligible for COVID vaccine no later than May 1

Biden's primetime address was his first since being sworn in as president.
President Biden on March 6, 2021
President Biden on March 6, 2021
(Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

President Biden on Thursday during his first primetime address since being sworn in as the nation's 46th commander-in-chief said that he will instruct states to make all adults eligible for coronavirus vaccination by no later than May 1.

"First, tonight I'm announcing that I will direct all states, tribes and territories to make all adults — people 18 and over —  eligible to be vaccinated no later than May 1," the president said. This "doesn't mean everyone's gonna have that shot immediately," he explained, though people can "get in line beginning May 1" and all adults will be eligible for vaccination.

"Secondly, at the time when every adult is eligible in May, we will launch with our partners, new tools to make it easier for you to find the vaccine and where to get the shot including a new website that will help you first find the place to get vaccinated and the one nearest you. No more searching day and night for an appointment for you and your loved ones," he said.

Biden said that more guidance will be forthcoming for those who have been fully vaccinated.

"Fourth, in the coming weeks we will issue further guidance on what you can and cannot do once fully vaccinated to lessen the confusion, to keep people safe and encourage more people to get vaccinated," he said.

The president pledged to do his utmost to defeat the virus and he appealed for all Americans to do their part.

"And finally, fifth, and maybe most importantly, I promise I will do everything in my power, I will not relent until we beat this virus. But I need you, the American people, I need you. I need every American to do their part," he said.

"I need you to get vaccinated when it's your turn and when you can find an opportunity and to help your family, your friends, your neighbors get vaccinated as well. Because here's the point: If we do all this, if we do our part, if we do this together, by July the 4th there's a good chance you, your families and friends will be able to get together in your backyard or in your neighborhood and have a cookout and a barbecue and celebrate Independence Day. That doesn't mean large events with lots of people together, but it does mean small groups will be able to get together. After this long, hard year that will make this Independence Day something truly special where we not only mark our independence as a nation, but we begin to mark our independence from this virus," the president said.