The grade Dr. Jerome Adams would give President Biden’s coronavirus response speech on Thursday would be a “B.”
Adams was Indiana’s Health Commissioner from October of 2014-September 2017. He also was the Surgeon General during Donald Trump’s time as President.
“It was a really powerful speech given by our President calling on Americans to do our part. He put a lot of blame on the people who are unvaccinated. I give him a B because one of the things that really concerns me is that you’re setting up a fight between the vaccinated and the unvaccinated,” said Adams in an interview with WISH-TV.
President Biden is requiring vaccinations or testing to be done once a week for companies with more than 100 employees. All federal workers are required to get vaccinated. Adams knows this will make life tricky for managers and bosses across the country.
“I’ve always said that your boss or workplace telling you to do something is going to have a greater impact and be met with less resistance than a governor or the President,” said Adams.
Conversations about the vaccine tend to get argumentative and political right away, but Adams has some suggestions on how to avoid that.
“We need to make sure we’re getting vaccine questions answered and not demonizing people while also doing what the President was trying to in communicating the urgency of the situation,” said Adams. “If someone is skeptical about the vaccines, the first key is to listen to their questions with empathy. I start off by asking, ‘what are your concerns?’
Adams said it’s okay to ask questions, but it’s not okay to let misinformation lead you to bad decisions. Adams did like that President Biden is making rapid tests available at cost through partnerships with Kroger, CVS, and Walgreens.
“I hope that’s coupled with adequate supply so that people can use testing as part of a layered strategy,” said Adams. There’s masking, testing, and vaccinations. It’s not going to be just one thing that gets us out of this pandemic.”