Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis vowed this week that no state resources will be devoted to the Biden administration's efforts to vaccinate children ages 5 and under against COVID-19.
“There is not going to be any state programs that are going to be trying to get COVID jabs to infants and toddlers and newborns,” DeSantis said Thursday. “That’s not something that we think is appropriate, and so that’s not where we are going to be utilizing our resources.”
“Our Department of Health has been very clear, the risk outweighs the benefits and we recommend against it. That’s not the same as banning it. People can access it if they want to,” he continued.
Throughout the pandemic and government-mandated shutdowns, the Republican governor quickly became the face of the pushback against government efforts to mandate the vaccine, shuttered businesses, and tried to force employers to comply with COVID rules.
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The FDA this week authorized two doses of the COVID vaccine for emergency use in children ages 5 and under, meaning the jab has not gone through the normal rigorous and routine testing to ensure its safety. Following approval from the CDC, which is expected to come sometime this weekend, the shot can then be given to toddlers and babies.
Children continue to be the least affected group affected by COVID. Of the roughly 1.005 million COVID deaths reported by the CDC in the United States - assuming that number is accurate - only 442 were children under the age of 5.