intends to publicly receive the coronavirus vaccine as soon as next week, his transition team said Wednesday, as health officials seek to overcome any doubts about its safety.
will get vaccinated on Friday, the White House said. His wife, Karen Pence, and Surgeon General
will also get the shot in what the White House said was an effort to “promote the safety and efficacy of the vaccine and build confidence among the American people.”
Mr. Biden has said he would follow the recommendations of
the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
The president-elect has emphasized the importance of helping the public tackle any skepticism of the vaccine. He told reporters Wednesday, “I don’t want to get ahead of the line but I want to make sure we demonstrate to the American people that it’s safe to take.”
Two Biden transition officials said Mr. Biden would receive the injection as soon as next week. The officials said Vice President-elect
would get vaccinated soon and, like Mr. Biden, in public. No specific details have yet been announced.
Dr. Fauci said in an interview with ABC News on Tuesday that Mr. Biden and Ms. Harris should be inoculated as soon as possible “for security reasons,” adding that he would want Mr. Biden “fully protected” when he enters the presidency in January. Dr. Fauci said he would recommend that President Trump and Mr. Pence receive the vaccination.
Mr. Trump, who contracted Covid-19 earlier this year, doesn’t have immediate plans to get vaccinated, the White House said.
“People working in the White House should receive the vaccine somewhat later in the program, unless specifically necessary,” he tweeted Sunday following news reports that top staffers would receive shots. “I have asked that this adjustment be made. I am not scheduled to take the vaccine, but look forward to doing so at the appropriate time.”
Appearing on Fox News on Monday, White House press secretary
clarified: “Key officials, like Situation Room staff, among others, will have access to this vaccine, some certain members of Congress.”
George W. Bush
have all said they would be vaccinated in public.
The vaccine has been developed in record speed, leading to some concern about its safety, as well as longstanding skepticism on vaccines among some populations. Sandra Lindsay, a nurse in New York City who was among the first to get the shot, said she hoped to instill public confidence, noting some in the West Indian community are reluctant to take it.
Ms. Lindsay, who is originally from Jamaica, said the inoculation didn’t feel different than any other. “We all need to do our part to put an end to the pandemic,” she said.
A poll released Tuesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation found 71% of respondents said they would get a vaccine, up from 63% in a September survey. About a quarter of the public remains hesitant, the poll found, with people saying they probably or definitely wouldn’t get a vaccine.
An October Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll found about 70% of registered voters surveyed said they would take a Covid-19 vaccine, although many said they would wait until it has been available for a while to see if there are major problems or side effects. Thirty percent of Black people said they would not take a vaccine at all, compared with 15% of white people and 20% of Hispanic people, according to the WSJ/NBC poll.
Write to Ken Thomas at [email protected] and Alex Leary at [email protected]
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