Gov. Glenn Youngkin on Monday released a public service announcement with the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) encouraging Virginians to get vaccinated as part of his COVID-19 Action Plan. While Youngkin said he does not believe in mandating the vaccine, he believes it’s a critical tool in the fight against COVID-19.
“I have always been a strong advocate for everyone to get the vaccine. We know that the vaccine is the best protection against severe illness as a result of COVID-19. I have made the choice to get vaccinated and encourage everyone to join me in doing that, but ultimately it is a personal decision to do so,” said Governor Glenn Youngkin. “After a heartbreaking pandemic, getting vaccinated can insure that there are better days ahead for Virginia.”
Youngkin’s COVID-19 Action Plan includes re-prioritizing resources toward vaccine education and outreach, including expanded efforts in disproportionately unvaccinated communities. The plan also includes efforts to host additional COVID-19 vaccine events across the state and increasing the number of mobile vaccine units that serve rural communities. Currently, there are approximately 1400 vaccine events across the Commonwealth.
Virginians who are unvaccinated remain at high risk of severe illness and hospitalization due to COVID-19. VDH recommends individuals who are 12 and older receive booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. Local Health Departments sponsor vaccine events every week in communities across Virginia, while VDH also has a mobile unit program taking the COVID-19 vaccine to areas where access is challenging. Community Vaccination Centers (CVCs) also have been open in nine locations in Virginia since October.
Statewide, 90 percent of adults have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine with 80 percent of adults fully vaccinated. Statewide, 70 percent of the population is fully vaccinated, but in many areas of Southwest Virginia, the percentage is less than 60 percent.
“Vaccines work, and we applaud Governor Youngkin for sharing these very important messages. Most of the people hospitalized with COVID-19, especially those experiencing severe symptoms, are unvaccinated. If you have not been vaccinated, please get vaccinated. It could save your life,” said Acting State Health Commissioner Colin M. Greene, MD, MPH.
Watch the video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v3VoQi7qbhU.
To find a vaccine event near you, contact or check the website of your local health department; to schedule a vaccine appointment at a CVC, pharmacy or other location, visit vaccinate.virginia.gov or call 877-VAX-IN-VA (877-829-4682, TTY users call 7-1-1). Assistance is available in English, Spanish, and more than 100 other languages. Walk-ins are welcome at the CVCs, but appointments are encouraged.