President Joe Biden has made clear his intention to ensure as many Americans as possible receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
Now, that effort is extending to children between 5 and 11 years old, as revealed in a new announcement from the Biden administration.
As the Daily Wire reported, however, many critics are skeptical about whether the reward is greater than the risk when it comes to vaccinating young kids.
“Conveniently and equitably available”
In a statement on Wednesday, the White House outlined its plan to vaccinate the roughly 28 million children in that age group.
One remaining hurdle standing in the White House’s way is the final approval of vaccines for young children from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These two bodies are expected to meet in the coming days to discuss the issue.
“Today the Biden administration is announcing a plan to ensure that, if a vaccine is authorized for children ages 5-11, it is quickly distributed and made conveniently and equitably available to families across the country,” the White House statement asserted. “Our planning efforts mean that we will be ready to begin getting shots in arms in the days following a final CDC recommendation.”
In accordance with that plan, local entities including schools, health centers, and clinics will be called upon to facilitate vaccines. There is also a fledgling campaign to provide education about the safety and efficacy of vaccinations for children.
“We know vaccines work”
Of course, many Americans on both sides of the debate are already paying plenty of attention to the developing narrative ahead of the likely approval for the use of COVID-19 vaccines among kids under 12.
As it stands, the CDC has reported that it is exceedingly rare for children between 5 and 18 to suffer severe illness or die from the virus. Fewer than 450 individuals in this age group have died since January 2020.
Furthermore, some critics warn of potential side effects associated with the vaccines, leading many parents to question whether it is worth risking a possible negative outcome to inoculate their children.
The White House has indicated that it believes the answer is yes, asserting: “Millions of adolescents ages 12-17 have been safely vaccinated, and we know vaccines work. The consequences of a pediatric COVID-19 case can be serious and potentially last months.”
It remains to be seen whether the millions of adults who are still wary of the vaccine will comply with the Biden administration’s plea to vaccinate their own kids.