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Trump suggests White House staff should get Covid-19 vaccine later

WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump has suggested that senior White House officials wait longer for the Covid-19 vaccine, hours after media outlets reported senior officials were to receive it within 10 days.

Late Sunday night, Mr Trump said on Twitter that he had asked for an adjustment to be made to the plans to vaccinate White House officials.

"People working in the White House should receive the vaccine somewhat later in the programme, unless specifically necessary," Mr Trump wrote, adding: "I am not scheduled to take the vaccine, but look forward to doing so at the appropriate time."

ESSENTIAL PERSONNEL

Reuters reported earlier that Mr Trump, Vice-President Mike Pence and other top US officials would be offered the newly approved Covid-19 vaccine beginning yesterday as part of a plan aimed at ensuring continuity of government, a source familiar with the plan said.

Essential personnel at the White House and certain officials in all three branches of government were set to be vaccinated within the next 10 days, said the source.

National Security Council spokesman John Ullyot said before Mr Trump's tweet that senior officials in the executive branch, Congress and judiciary would receive vaccinations in line with a protocol aimed at ensuring the US government can continue to operate during a pandemic or catastrophic emergency.

"The American people should have confidence that they are receiving the same safe and effective vaccine as senior officials of the United States government on the advice of public health professionals and national security leadership," Mr Ullyot said in a statement. - REUTERS

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