Presumed President-elect Joe Biden received the coronavirus vaccine on Monday, joining a group of high-profile public officials who are among the first to get the shot.
The former vice president televised his vaccination to reassure people that it was safe and told Americans to avoid traveling for Christmas, Breitbart reported.
The first vaccinations are underway after the Food and Drug Administration authorized two vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna. They were developed in record time through the Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed.
Public officials urge vaccination
Public officials are urging Americans to get vaccinated when the vaccine becomes available to the general public, but many Americans are reluctant, with Republicans more likely than Democrats to be skeptical, The Hill reported.
Biden joined other prominent figures who have televised their vaccinations to mollify fears, such as Vice President Mike Pence, who got his shot on Friday. The vaccine comes in two doses.
Wearing a mask and black long-sleeved shirt, Biden said there was “nothing to worry about” after receiving his shot at a Delaware hospital on Monday. Biden also told Americans to listen to Dr. Anthony Fauci, who got his shot Tuesday, and avoid traveling for Christmas.
“I hope people listen to all the experts and the Dr. [Anthony] Faucis… talking about the need to wear masks during this Christmas and New Year’s holidays, wear masks, socially distance and if you don’t have to travel, don’t travel, don’t travel. It’s really important because we’re still in the thick of this,” Biden said.
President Donald Trump has hailed his administration’s success in quickly developing a vaccine, and Biden gave his election rival some credit as well.
“I think that the administration deserves some credit getting this off the ground with Operation Warp Speed,” he said.
Trump has not received the vaccine yet but will “when the time is right,” the White House said.
“I feel extreme confidence in the safety and the efficacy of this vaccine and I want to encourage everyone who has the opportunity to get vaccinated so that we could have a veil of protection over this country that would end this pandemic,” he said.