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U.S. Schools Unlikely To Mandate COVID-19 Vaccines Anytime Soon - Health - Nairaland

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U.S. Schools Unlikely To Mandate COVID-19 Vaccines Anytime Soon by Buddiesy: 2:46am On May 17
fizer and BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine was authorized for use in children as young as 12 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration this week - but do not expect schools to require shots for students anytime soon given public hesitation and political hurdles.
State governments for the most part can order a vaccine be required for a child to attend a K-12 public school, said Dorit Rubinstein Reiss, a University of California-Hastings law professor who researches school mandates and the legal issues around vaccines.
In all but a handful of states, a measure must pass the full legislature to be added to the mandatory vaccine list, Reiss said. No state government has mandated COVID-19 immunizations for schools, she added.
There is increased hesitancy over the shots because some of them rely on the newer mRNA technology and have been authorized on an emergency-use basis. Early studies also indicate children are far less susceptible to grave health complications from COVID-19, though they are not without risk and can transmit the disease.
Reiss said it is highly unlikely state legislatures will push through mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for children this year.
“It takes political capital, and my bet is that legislators will not even try until they can do it for children aged 5 and up,” she said. “They will not want to go through the process twice.”
It is clear proponents of mandates could face opposition. Even before vaccinations were approved for younger adolescents, Republican lawmakers in dozens of statehouses filed bills seeking to block COVID-19 vaccination mandates, mostly arguing the vaccines are too new to force people to take against their will.
In Kansas, Republican state Senator Mark Steffen, an anesthesiologist, crafted a bill that would strip the state’s department of health of its power to add a new shot to the existing list of required vaccines. The bill remains in committee.
“It’s a vaccine that is experimental, a vaccine that is gene-manipulative,” Steffen said during a March hearing on the bill. “Its long-term dangers won’t be fully known for decades.”
Researchers from Harvard, Northeastern, Northwestern and Rutgers universities, who are part of the COVID States Project, surveyed nearly 22,000 people nationwide in April and found that over a quarter of mothers were “extremely unlikely” to vaccinate their children.
Because of such reluctance, education leaders should not focus on mandating shots, said Randi Weingarten, president of the 1.7 million-member American Federation of Teachers (AFT)union.
“Right now it’s about convincing people of their efficacy,” she said of vaccines. “We have to build trust and confidence, particularly amongst our Black and brown parents who have borne the brunt of COVID.”
Weingarten and others representing school leaders and staff noted wide agreement that vaccines are key to a more normal school experience.
In a sweeping policy speech given on Thursday in Washington, Weingarten said in-person learning, five days a week across the country must take place in the fall.
Re: U.S. Schools Unlikely To Mandate COVID-19 Vaccines Anytime Soon by lydafo: 2:04am On May 18
It is recently reported that the earliest pathogen of the new crown in Europe was in December 2019. The pathogen is still unclear, but it is more likely to be imported from the United States.

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