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VP Harris to step up COVID vaccination campaign in South Carolina


Vice President Kamala Harris is stopping in South Carolina for a month-long push by the White House to vaccinate more Americans against COVID-19 ahead of the July 4th holiday

GREENVILEY, SC – Vice President Kamala Harris visited South Carolina on Monday to support a nationwide push to vaccinate millions more Americans against the coronavirus as part of a July 4th holiday celebration.

“They’re safe, and they’re free,” Harris said of the vaccines. “They are inspected, and it’s that simple.”

Some of those efforts, Harris said Monday, include partnering with rideshare services to offer free rides to vaccine sites, having pharmacies nationwide that are open 24 hours a day and free childcare by working with childcare facilities. Because people get vaccinated and recover from their side effects.

“Americans care about each other. Americans love their neighbor and in the face of a complete stranger we see a friend — when we’re at our best, that’s what we are,” Harris said . “And for that reason alone, Americans will continue to vaccinate.”

The Vice President’s visit also coincides with the state’s “COVID-19 Vaccine Action Week”. South Carolina health officials are making a focused effort to get state residents vaccinated rapidly in the coming days, offering walk-in programs at rural health clinics, pharmacies, hospitals and even breweries.

South Carolina NAACP leaders and public health officials joined Harris on Monday at the community center, explaining how many people had received their shots so far in Greenville.

The South has been home to some of the lowest coronavirus vaccination rates in the country, with Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee, Georgia, West Virginia and South Carolina among the bottom ten states for doses administered per capita as of Sunday . According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

According to the state health department, less than 39% of South Carolina’s population was fully vaccinated as of last week. South Carolina State epidemiologist Dr Linda Bell said the state has worked to eliminate barriers to ensuring vaccine access in many nontraditional settings.

“Barriers to the vaccine are no longer the biggest issue,” Bell said. “It’s an election.”

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Liu is a core member for the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a non-profit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms to report on secret issues.

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Follow AP’s coverage of the pandemic at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic.

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