NY rolling out #VaxtoSchool campaign to boost COVID-19 vaccination rates among NYers ages 12-17
There's a new urgency to encourage more parents to get students to get vaccinated against COVID-19 as they return to school.
Gov. Kathy Hochul on Wednesday unveiled a #VaxtoSchool initiative to increase COVID-19 vaccination rates among school-aged New Yorkers.
School just started for 12-year-old Sammi Winogradoff and she's already doing her part to stay in the classroom all year long. On Wednesday afternoon, she's getting her second COVID-19 shot.
"A lot of my friends have it and I feel like it's a good way to keep people safe," says Winogradoff.
Her mom feels strongly about getting her kid the shot, but adds it was a decision they made together.
"She also was really advocating for it for herself. She wants to be able to do her part," says Sammi's mother, Susan Winogradoff.
But only around half of kids her age have so far done the same.
Adolescents ages 12 to 17 are the least vaccinated age demographic in New York, according to state data, but Hochul is trying to change that.
She launched new digital ads on social media that take aim at vaccine misinformation and remind kids vaccines will help them get back to doing the things they love, like being with friends, playing sports and learning in person.
"Prioritizing the health of our teachers, our administrators, and our children so we get that sense of security that parents will need when they say goodbye to their child and send them off to school," says Hochul.
Over the next several days, the state will roll out new pop-up vaccination sites targeting students and their families.
State officials are also working to integrate New York's Excelsior Pass at SUNY campuses statewide to make it easier to bring more students back safely.