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Tags: Biden Administration | Vaccines | cdc | walensky | covid | vaccines

CDC Director Walensky Stops Short of Recommending More Mandates

CDC Director Walensky Stops Short of Recommending More Mandates
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky answers is seen during a Senate hearingon May 19. Greg Nash-Pool/Getty Images)

By    |   Sunday, 24 October 2021 02:04 PM

The Biden administration has a plan to encourage COVID-19 vaccinations among essential workers and students, Centers for Disease Control Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said Sunday, but she held back on commenting whether she thinks further mandates are warranted.

"The most disruptive thing you can do to a workforce is to have a Covid outbreak in that workforce," Walensky said on "Fox News Sunday." "That will most definitely not only send people home but it will send people to the hospital and some may pass."

President Joe Biden's Sept. 9 executive order mandated the vaccines for federal employees but didn't extend the mandates to essential workers. However, some cities have put mandates in place. 

The administration's plan will point essential workers to "education and counseling to get people the information they need," Walensky, also telling show host Chris Wallace that more police officers died from COVID-19 last year than from all over causes combined. 

Police officers, however, have remained resistant to the shot mandates after cities such as Los Angeles and Chicago have ordered their departments to be vaccinated. In New York, where Mayor Bill de Blasio is weighing a mandate, a police union has threatened to file a lawsuit. 

Walensky also didn't directly answer Wallace's questions about whether the administration will push for a vaccine mandate for the nation's schoolchildren, as there are still discussions underway about official authorization for the shots to be given to younger people 

"We're having discussions about authorization, so I think we need to get children vaccinated through this authorization and get to approval before we can make a judgment there," she said. 

Meanwhile, Walensky stressed that Americans shouldn't get complacent yet about the pandemic, even though the number of people with the virus has been dropping. 

The United States still has over 70,000 COVID-19 cases a day, and those numbers are still high, she told Wallace. 

"So I think the numbers speak for themselves," she said. "Cases are down more than 50 percent from where they were in September, but we can't get complacent yet."

Walensky didn't rule out further spikes in infection, even though the numbers have dropped. 

"We need to be humble," she told Wallace. "The virus tends to find places that are under-vaccinated, so as our case numbers come down, we need to continue to do the hard work of getting more and more people vaccinated."

The CDC director, when asked about the upcoming holidays, said children are safe to go trick-or-treating, even if they haven't been vaccinated, but large gatherings should be avoided as the children wouldn't be protected from COVID-19 without having had their shots. 

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Politics
The Biden administration has a plan to encourage COVID-19 vaccinations among essential workers and students, Centers for Disease Control Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said Sunday, but she held back on commenting whether she thinks further mandates are...
cdc, walensky, covid, vaccines
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2021-04-24
Sunday, 24 October 2021 02:04 PM
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