Facebook, Twitter, and Snap are among the companies that will assist with the Biden administration’s promotional campaign for vaccine eligibility, Axios reported. The White House had set a date of May 1st for states to open coronavirus vaccine eligibility to all adults, but later pushed it to April 19th.
The White House is hoping to reach populations who may have higher rates of vaccine hesitancy with the effort. Anthony Fauci, the president’s chief medical adviser, will do video clips on Snapchat, according to Axios, and Facebook and Twitter will send out push alerts to notify users that they’re eligible to receive the vaccine. Vice President Kamala Harris will also be involved with the social media push.
Half of all US adults have received at least one COVID-19 vaccination, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), But the administration appears concerned that last week’s decision to pause the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine may have made people already hesitant to receive a vaccine even more wary.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and CDC recommended last week that the US pause the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine after six people who received the shot experienced unusual blood clots. The agencies wanted time to investigate whether there’s a connection between the clots and the vaccine. Fauci said on Sunday that he believes the pause will be lifted by Friday, perhaps under some kind of restriction or warning.
“We can confirm that Snap has been in touch with the White House regarding efforts to spread awareness of vaccine eligibility among Snapchatters,” a spokesperson said in an email to The Verge, “building on our continued efforts to support our community during the COVID-19 pandemic.” The spokesperson did not elaborate on details of the efforts.
Likewise, a Twitter spokesperson confirmed in an email to The Verge that the company was “working in partnership with the White House to elevate authoritative information in regard to COVID-19,” but did not share further details.
Facebook and the White House did not reply to requests for comment on Sunday.
Update April 18th 8:32PM ET: Added comments from Twitter and Snap