President Biden’s White House medical team has administered the coronavirus vaccine to several hundred staffers, according to an Axios report, detailing how the new administration is handling the rollout of vaccines in a complex that was riddled with clusters of new coronavirus infections in the final months of former President Trump’s tenure.
“Approximately three dozen incoming members of the senior staff, national security team and incoming cabinet nominees received their first dose in early January,” White House spokesperson Kevin Munoz told Axios.
He added that since then “the White House medical team has vaccinated several hundred additional staffers from the Executive Office of the President who are working on site every day.”
The news of the ramped-up vaccination program within the White House comes after Trump in December had opposed the vaccination of White House staff, saying in a no-longer-available tweet that “people working in the White House should receive the vaccine somewhat later in the program, unless specifically necessary.”
Officials told Axios that the Biden administration is aiming to vaccinate all in-person staff over the next few weeks. The administration has also tightened protocols to curb the spread of coronavirus by requiring N95 masks at all times in the complex and daily COVID tests for White House employees.
Biden also told reporters on Monday that he hoped to speed up rollout of vaccines nationwide, envisioning 1.5 million vaccinations a day — a number that would exceed his pledge of 1 million doses minimum to be administered daily.
“I think with the grace of God . . . we’ll be able to get that to 1.5 million a day,” Biden said.