Here’s what President Biden’s vaccine mandate means for Alabama

Joeb Iden
President Joe Biden. Photo via Joe Biden on Facebook

On Thursday, September 9th, The White House announced sweeping new vaccine mandates, requiring as many as 100 million Americans to get vaccinated in an effort to help curb the COVID-19 pandemic. Keep reading for all the details, including how this requirement will affect Alabama.

President Biden’s Vaccine Mandate in a Nutshell

Joe Biden
The FDA recently approved the Pfizer vaccine. Photo via Joe Biden on Facebook

As part of the Biden Administration’s COVID-19 action plan, workers—in both the public and private sectors—across the nation will be required to get vaccinated or tested for COVID-19 weekly.

Here’s who will be affected by the Biden Administration’s vaccine mandate:

  • Employers with more than 100 employees are mandated to require employees be vaccinated OR tested for COVID-10 weekly. (Roughly 80 million Americans)
  • All employees at healthcare facilities that receive federal Medicare or Medicaid are required to be fully vaccinated (Roughly 17 million Americans)
  • Federal employees of the executive branch, as well as any private contractors working for the federal government, will be required to be vaccinated. (Roughly 4 million Americans)

Although more than 208 million Americans have received at least their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, roughly 80 million Americans are fully unvaccinated. During White House press conference on September 9th, President Biden had strong remarks towards Americans that remain unvaccinated:

“This is a pandemic of the unvaccinated. And it’s caused by the fact that despite America having an unprecedented and successful vaccination program, despite the fact that for almost five months free vaccines have been available in 80,000 different locations, we still have nearly 80 million Americans who have failed to get the shot.”

Remarks by President Biden on Fighting the COVID-⁠19 Pandemic

Here’s How These Vaccine Mandates Will Affect Alabama

In Alabama, Governor Kay Ivey tweeted her criticisms of the Biden Administration’s vaccine mandates, although she continued to encourage her constituents to get a COVID-19 vaccine if they haven’t already.

As of September 10th, 1.84 million in Alabama—39.6% of the state’s population—are fully vaccinated, although 50.8% of the state is at least partially vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). However, Alabama has one of the lowest vaccination rates in the nation, and the lack of interest in the vaccine has resulted in over 65,000 doses going to waste after expiring.

Alabama
Over 4 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered to Alabamians. Data via Alabama’s COVID-19 Dashboard Hub

Under the Biden Administration’s new COVID-19 vaccine mandates, any Alabama employer with more than 100 employees will be required to test unvaccinated employees weekly. In addition, employers with federal contracts are mandated to require vaccinations, with no option to test weekly. Finally, any healthcare employer that benefits from federal Medicare or Medicaid is required to mandate vaccinations for all employees.

These mandates will affect all of Alabama’s largest employers, such as Redstone Arsenal, the University of Alabama at Birmingham and Alabama Power Company.

In Alabama, residents at are ages 12 and older are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. According to the Alabama Department of Public Health, the COVID-19 vaccine is available at:

To learn more about ways to get vaccinated in Alabama, visit ALCovidVaccine.gov.

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Nathan Watson
Tennessee native who fell in love with Birmingham during college. Graduated from Birmingham-Southern College in 2019. Passionate about Birmingham and its continued growth.
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