Thaddeus Swanek Senior Writer and Editor, Strategic Communications

Published

November 19, 2021

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In this week’s Path Forward event, U.S. Chamber President and CEO Suzanne Clark discussed the status of vaccination development and uptake among adults and young children.

The Path Forward, a U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation event series, helps business and community leaders find the answers they need to execute a responsible reopening strategy for a post-pandemic world. 

What Happened?
Children aged 5-11 are now eligible to get vaccinated against COVID-19 in the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control now recommends that children in that age group receive the Pfizer-BioNTech pediatric COVID-19 Vaccine.

During the hosted discussion, a pollster and pharmaceutical professional shared their insights about demographic differences between those who want the vaccine and those who don’t—and how this affects their children’s chance of getting the shots. They also highlighted why the vaccine-hesitant give employers’ vaccine requirements more weight.

What the Experts Are Saying:

“We were relieved on October 29 when the FDA approved the Pfizer vaccine for kids ages 5 to 11, followed quickly by the formal recommendation from the CDC to administer these vaccines. This is welcome news for so many parents eager to protect their children as we head into flu season.” – Suzanne Clark, President and CEO, U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

“As of last week, more than 900,000 kids in this age group have received their first COVID shot. While this is great progress, it means that just 3% of kids ages 5 to 11 have their first dose.” – Suzanne Clark, President and CEO, U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

“We’re living now in two Americas. There’s 70% of America that’s been vaccinated and 30% of America who have not been vaccinated. And this rolls over to what you do with your children.” – Bill McInturff, NBC News Pollster.

“If you are vaccinated, a majority of people say they will have their children vaccinated immediately. If you’re not vaccinated, that’s only three percent…So, their own decision about their vaccination is clearly rolling over to the decisions they would make on behalf of their children.” – Bill McInturff, NBC News Pollster.

“Those people not vaccinated said they’d be the most likely to consider vaccination if it was something that their employers requested…If there is going to be any movement around this core number of people that will not vaccinate, it may well be because of their employment status.” – Bill McInturff, NBC News Pollster.

“The data are clear: All these vaccines are safe and effective…The number of people that have been vaccinated that get hospitalized, versus the number of people that haven’t been vaccinated who get hospitalized, are something like seven or eight to one.” – Stan Erck, Novavax CEO.

“At the beginning of last year, we had zero manufacturing capacity. Now, we’ve got it in eight different countries and we’re at the rate of being able to make a couple of billion doses of vaccine starting in the next month or two.” – Stan Erck, Novavax CEO.

What You Can Do: Please consider joining the Rally for Recovery Commitment, a U.S. Chamber-led program encouraging every company and organization to take three basic, but important, steps to get the country back to health and American workers back to work.

And if you’re looking to get vaccinated, visit Vaccines.gov to find a vaccination site near you! 

Up Next:

Please join future Path Forward events to learn how to better protect you workers, customers, coworkers, and friends from the spread of coronavirus.

Additional Resources:

About the authors

Thaddeus Swanek

Senior Writer and Editor, Strategic Communications

Thaddeus is a senior writer and editor with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's strategic communications team.

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