HONOLULU (KHON2) — First Lady Dr. Jill Biden toured a mobile vaccine clinic at Waipahu High School Sunday afternoon with Hawaii Governor David Ige.
She watched as medical students vaccinated younger students.
The high school had about 100 vaccination sign-ups on Sunday. A total of 105 doses were administered, according to Hawaii Pacific Health.
After the tour, she spoke to a crowd of teachers and local officials including Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi, House Speaker Scott Saiki and several city council members.
“Hawaii has done a fantastic job getting shots in arms,” First Lady Biden said. “But we’re not done yet, there are still far too many people who aren’t vaccinated.”
“And this last push just seems the hardest of all,” she continued.
First Lady Biden thanked everyone who had already gotten vaccinated and encouraged others to do the same.
“Maybe you think whether one person gets vaccinated doesn’t matter, but you know it does matter and we’ve seen COVID is more contagious than ever and it continues to spread,” she continued. “Even one hospitalization, one life lost is too many.”
“Being fully vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself from hospitalization and death,” she added.
First Lady Biden thanked the teachers in attendance for their hard work last year and teachers told KHON2 they feel ready for the new school year.
“We were so excited as educators to get one of us in the First Lady’s seat,” said Hawaii island teacher Hope Pualani-McKeen.
McKeen said she, along with her daughter and son, all attend different schools and she felt uneasy with in-person learning last year.
“But now that we’re fully vaccinated, I feel a little more confident in everyone heading back to the classroom and being safe,” she said.
After speaking with friends who are biologists and learning how the vaccine works, she decided to get her family vaccinated.
“It’s really important for kids that can get vaccinated to get vaccinated because, for those who can’t, it makes it a little safer,” she continued.
“I think there’s so much misinformation out there and as teachers that’s really big,” McKeen said. “We teach our students to look for accurate information, so it’s so important to debunk the misinformation and get accurate information and get vaccinated for sure.”
Governor David Ige also commented on Hawaii’s increasing infection rate.
“Hawaii like communities across the nation and around the world is seeing an alarming surge in COVID-19 cases. Almost all of the people getting sick today are not vaccinated,” the governor said. “The evidence is clear. We can prevent illness, suffering and even death by getting vaccines to many family members and friends. We can all work to prevent further loss. Each of us has a part to play in keeping our communities healthy and safe. Help us. Help us spread the word. If you know someone who hasn’t been vaccinated, let them know that the vaccine is safe and effective and vaccines are available for free, all across the state.”