SILVER SPRING, MD – The American Nurses Association (ANA), representing the interests of the nation’s 4.2 million registered nurses, applauds the Biden Administration’s efforts to administer 200 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to all eligible Americans. ANA supports the development, distribution, and administration of safe, effective COVID-19 vaccines to protect the public. Vaccination of all Americans against COVID-19 is imperative and this milestone demonstrates significant progress in our nation’s recovery from this pandemic.
“The mass distribution and the broader availability of COVID-19 vaccines to millions of Americans is commendable,” said ANA President Ernest J. Grant, PhD, RN, FAAN. “This is an encouraging turning point in our nation’s response efforts, but it does not mean that we are in the clear. We all want to get back to some sense of normalcy, but we are not quite there yet. We must stay the course and work together.”
As new cases of the highly contagious COVID-19 variant (B.1.1.7) surge across many communities with an uptick in hospitalizations in some areas, ANA urges the public to remain diligent in practicing the effective and scientifically proven preventative measures that stem the spread of this deadly disease - wearing a mask, hand washing, and social distancing. Additionally, the public should continue to stay updated on the spread of COVID-19 in their communities and seek reliable information from public health officials on COVID-19 vaccines, COVID-19 variants, and recommendations for resuming travel and other activities.
“Many Americans remain apprehensive about getting vaccinated against COVID-19,” said Dr. Grant. “Consistent efforts to engage with all Americans about the importance of immunization and address concerns about COVID-19 vaccines remain urgent. As trusted voices, I especially urge nurses and health care professionals from all walks of life and backgrounds to connect with their patients and communities to help disseminate culturally relevant information and have meaningful conversations to answer questions.”
This past fall, Dr. Grant voluntarily participated in a Moderna phase III COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial to raise vaccine awareness and support the nursing profession. He has elected to remain in the study for the full two years, as health care professionals continue to gather data on the effects of the vaccine and the length of anticipated immunity. Currently, Dr. Grant has been volunteering at his alma mater North Carolina Central University’s COVID-19 vaccine clinic.
Providing COVID-19 vaccine education and resources to build vaccine confidence aligns with ANA’s longstanding commitment to immunization as a critical component of public health. ANA has developed key COVID-19 vaccine principles for nurses, created a focused COVID-19 video education series, and collaborated with the Department of Health and Human Services as a founding partner for the COVID-19 Community Corps. ANA also works with leading organizations and coalitions such as the Ad Council and Made to Save to deploy dynamic content to reach consumers about the importance of getting vaccinated against COVID-19.
As providers, patient educators, researchers, scientists, and vaccine administrators, it is essential that nurses are informed and have a defined and visible role in the prioritization and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. ANA continues to work closely with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as a key partner for Project Firstline as well as the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices and many other entities to ensure nurses’ voices and perspectives are included in critical conversations. All nurses and the public can stay connected and learn more by visiting ANA’s COVID-19 Resource Center.
About the American Nurses Association
The American Nurses Association (ANA) is the premier organization representing the interests of the nation's 4.2 million registered nurses. ANA advances the profession by fostering high standards of nursing practice, promoting a safe and ethical work environment, bolstering the health and wellness of nurses, and advocating on health care issues that affect nurses and the public. ANA is at the forefront of improving the quality of health care for all. For more information, visit www.nursingworld.org