Jill Biden launches ‘nationwide’ child immunization effort

On Monday, his office said in a statement that Biden “will launch a nationwide effort urging parents and guardians to immunize children between the ages of 5 and 11. The first lady will visit a Covid-19 pediatric vaccination clinic at Franklin Sherman Elementary School in McLean, Virginia, the first school to administer the polio vaccine in 1954. “

The first lady, who is also a community college teacher, has previously traveled the country to encourage vaccinations and also visited schools, highlighting the huge deficit that Covid-19 has caused to many families, teachers and school systems. Biden’s new efforts will target the country’s youngest and most recently eligible vaccine candidates. Friday’s announcement comes days after the director of the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr Rochelle Walensky, approved a recommendation to vaccinate children aged 5 to 11 against Covid-19 with the course two doses of Pfizer.

“This will allow parents to end months of anxious worry for their children and reduce the extent to which children transmit the virus to others. This is a big step forward for our nation in our fight to defeat the virus. virus, “Biden said in a statement. declaration.

“Over the past few weeks my administration has worked hard to prepare for this moment: we are ready to act. We have already secured enough vaccines for every child in America, and over the past weekend, we began the process of packing and shipping millions of doses of pediatric vaccines. These doses, specially designed for these young children, have started arriving in thousands of places across the country.

Jill Biden, who teaches in-person writing classes this semester at Northern Virginia Community College, has spoken often about the main challenges of distance learning for students and educators. And with the students back in the classroom, Biden understood how a child’s cough could “make parents’ hearts beat” as she visited a school in Washington, DC, in September.

“It’s difficult, but you are doing your best. And I want you to know that you are not alone,” she said, expressing her gratitude to parents, teachers and school support staff for their efforts over the past year.

She praised the political climate and the polarization of the reopening of schools.

“We may not always know what the future holds, but we know what we owe our children. We owe them a promise to keep their schools open as safe as possible. We owe them a commitment to follow the science. . We owe them unity so that we can fight the virus, not against each other, ”she said.

CNN’s Kate Bennett and Maggie Fox contributed to this report.

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