In line with continuity-of-government procedures in the United States, members of Congress have started receiving COVID-19 vaccines. The lawmakers are also encouraging members of the public to do away with fears associated with getting vaccinated. Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, and Mitch McConnell, Senate Majority Leader, both received the vaccine on Friday, according to Twitter posts.
Dr. Brian Monahan, the attending physician at Capitol, administered the first shots of the vaccine to the two lawmakers on Friday. Pelosi tweeted that she had been vaccinated against COVID-19 before McConnell did. The speaker pleaded with citizens to stay safe while the vaccines are being distributed in batches, as advised by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Pelosi urged members of the public to continue wearing their masks and obeying other COVID-19 protocols.
Shortly after Pelosi tweeted, McConnell also shared similar news on his Twitter account.
“I just got vaccinated against the coronavirus,” McConnell wrote. “The vaccine is safe and effective against the virus and it will help us overcome this pandemic. The next step is for us to resume our fight for a rescue package for Americans so that there would be more money this time for quicker distribution.”
All United States lawmakers are eligible for vaccination, according to Monahan and Pelosi. Some other members of Congress have also announced that they have scheduled appointments to get the vaccine. Monahan stated in a memo that top officials of the three arms of government will be eligible to receive the vaccine, according to the National Security Council.
The physician stated that next in line to receive vaccines in the Capitol will be continuity-essential members of staff who will receive COVID-19 vaccines after all the members of Congress have been vaccinated, Axios reports.
Vice President Mike Pence, his wife Karen Pence, and Surgeon General Jerome Adams also got vaccinated on Friday. President Donald Trump will not be getting vaccinated until the White House doctors recommend it, an official told reporters on Friday. The official stated that Trump will not be getting the vaccine until the monoclonal antibody cocktail he received when he got COVID-19 completely leaves his system.
President-elect Joe Biden will get the vaccine in public, early next week, according to reports. Biden said he will be receiving the vaccine in public to show that it is safe and effective. VP-elect Kamala Harris will also be vaccinated in public, according to a Wednesday statement from the Biden transition office.
Vaccination began on Monday following the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval of the vaccine last week. Healthcare workers and members of long-term care-homes will get priority at first, as recommended by the CDC.