The president received his final dose on camera, but Americans aren’t keen on another hit
US President Joe Biden received his fifth dose of the Covid-19 vaccine on Tuesday and urged Americans to do the same. While the president pushes for an annual vaccination schedule, less than 10% of the eligible population has received the latest omicron-specific vaccine.
“To get vaccinated,” Biden said during a White House event. “It’s incredibly effective, but the truth is too few people are getting it. We need to change that so we can all have a safe and healthy holiday season.
Biden, who caught a recurring case of Covid-19 earlier this summer when he had received a total of four doses of the vaccine at the time, then rolled up his sleeve and received his fifth dose – this time from the booster bivalent specific to Pfizer’s omicron – in front of the camera.
The president said the coronavirus vaccine is “just like the flu vaccine”, and added that “For most Americans, one Covid vaccine every year will be all they need.”
However, adoption of the latest set of reminders has been slow. Fewer than 20 million people have taken the updated formulation, or just 8.5% of the eligible population, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Meanwhile, the state of Florida has advised against mRNA booster shots for children under 18 and men under 39, citing the low risk posed by Covid-19 to children and the risk high rate of cardiac arrest in vaccinated young men. Several European countries have issued similar recommendations in recent months, but the CDC still recommends that children as young as five receive bivalent boosters and has recommended that Covid-19 vaccines be added to routine childhood immunization schedules.
Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, Biden has combined an intense public messaging campaign with legal mandates for federal workers and contractors in an effort to increase vaccination rates in the United States. Although some municipalities also drafted their own mandates, legal challenges followed. On Tuesday in New York, the Staten Island Supreme Court ordered the city to lift its warrant and rehire all employees fired for failing to meet full back wages.
According to World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, almost a third of the world’s population has yet to receive a single dose of a Covid-19 vaccine.
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