'Nobody Saw it Coming': Biden Says US Lacks COVID Test Kits as Omicron on the Rise Across Nation

© REUTERS / KEVIN LAMARQUEU.S. President Joe Biden coughs as he speaks about the country's fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at the White House in Washington, U.S., December 21, 2021
U.S. President Joe Biden coughs as he speaks about the country's fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at the White House in Washington, U.S., December 21, 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 23.12.2021
Earlier this week, POTUS delivered a keynote speech on his country's fight against COVID as America faces the Omicron variant, which recently became the dominant coronavirus strain in the country, accounting for nearly three-quarters of all new cases.
In an interview with ABC News, US President Joe Biden commented on his administration's handling of COVID, saying that he wished he had ordered free at-home test kits earlier than this week.

When asked whether it was "good enough" given that there were "no test kits in some places, three days before Christmas", Biden said, "no, nothing's been good enough".

"I wish I had thought about ordering half a million (tests) two months ago, before COVID hit here", he added.
President Biden Announces Free At Home COVID19 Tests for the Public - Sputnik International, 1920, 22.12.2021
President Biden Announces Free at Home COVID-19 Tests for the Public
When grilled on how the administration had failed to see the new COVID variant Omicron coming, POTUS said: "How did we get it wrong? Nobody saw it coming. Nobody in the whole world. Who saw it coming?"
At the same time, Biden insisted that the US was now in better shape than last Christmas in terms of the fight against the coronavirus.

"Last Christmas we were in a situation where we had significantly fewer people vaccinated, emergency rooms were filled, we had serious backups in hospitals that were causing great difficulties. We're in a situation now where we have 200 million people fully vaccinated. And we have more than that who have had at least one shot – and we're getting these booster shots, as well", he underscored.

The interview comes a few days after Biden pledged that his administration would take an array of measures to grapple with a surge in COVID cases this winter. The US president said that 500 million at-home rapid tests will be bought and delivered free to all Americans who request them as of January.
Biden also announced that 1,000 military medical personnel will be deployed to hospitals nationwide over the next two months, and new federal testing sites nationwide, with the first in New York City, to be launched within this period.
A server wears a face shield and face covering as people sit to watch a broadcast of the first debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden at The Abbey, with socially distanced outdoor seating, on September 29, 2020 in West Hollywood, California - Sputnik International, 1920, 22.12.2021
Trump 'Surprised, Very Appreciative' of Biden's Rare Praise of His Role in COVID Vaccine Rollout
The rollout of the new steps unfolds as the Biden administration has been under pressure over whether it is doing enough to tackle the rapid spread of the Omicron variant.
According to the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, Omicron has now become the dominant variant of coronavirus in the country and it has been identified in every US state, in addition to Washington, DC, and Puerto Rico.
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