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Military Vaccinations for COVID-19

Now I have an explanation for it not being 100 percent.

I’ve blogged previously about the “what the hey of all military personnel not being vaccinated for the coronavirus?” When did that become an option!? Just today in the news, the secretary of defense was touting the “voluntary” vaccination rate in the military approaching 70 percent. And, I was on Joint Base Lewis McCord on Saturday and observed military personnel in uniform getting vaccinated at the Post Exchange.

Over the Fourth of July, I spoke with an Air Force officer who explained to me (because I asked) that since the vaccine(s) are still classified as “experimental,” they cannot require a mandatory vaccination for all personnel — only those deploying as a unit overseas.

It could be mandatory if the president issued an order making it mandatory, which neither president has opted to do since we’ve had the vaccines available.

Once the vaccine(s) are fully approved, then it will no longer be an option.

All of the above is somewhat comforting for an old military dog like myself and I can now sleep more soundly knowing we do not have a “Burger King Military” — meaning, “have it your way!”
Eric Holdeman is a nationally known emergency manager. He has worked in emergency management at the federal, state and local government levels. Today he serves as the Director, Center for Regional Disaster Resilience (CRDR), which is part of the Pacific Northwest Economic Region (PNWER). The focus for his work there is engaging the public and private sectors to work collaboratively on issues of common interest, regionally and cross jurisdictionally.
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