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Fact Check: Did Biden Tell Americans to Prepare for Hurricane Ian by Getting Vaccinated?
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Fact Check: Did Biden Tell Americans to Prepare for Hurricane Ian by Getting Vaccinated?

An old statement is being recirculated.

Viral social media posts claim that President Joe Biden told Americans to prepare for Hurricane Ian by getting vaccinated:

Despite what is claimed in some of the posts, this video is not recent: Biden made the comments in question on August 10, 2021, during a briefing from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Homeland Security, and COVID-19 response teams. Biden was not speaking on the eve of a hurricane making landfall in the United States, and was instead speaking generally about, among other things, preparing for hurricanes shutting down medical access:

“Let me be clear: If you’re in a state where hurricanes often strike — like Florida or the Gulf Coast or into Texas — a vital part of preparing for hurricane season is to get vaccinated now.  Everything is more complicated if you’re not vaccinated and a hurricane or a natural disaster hits. If you wind up having to evacuate, if you wind up having to stay in a shelter, you don’t want to add COVID-19 to the list of dangers that you’re going to be confronting. Get vaccinated now so you’re ready for whatever may come this month.  And it’s likely some serious hurricanes are going to come this month.”

Biden’s comments were not just focused on vaccination, and he went on to say:

“So, go to to make sure that you’re prepared with the hurricane — with a hurricane plan.  Know your evacuation zones.  Have a plan with your family.  And get your emergency supplies and a go-bag ready, and don’t forget to pack one for your pets as well.  I mean that seriously. And if you’ve got older neighbors or people in your community who might need your help, check in to see if you can help them make a plan as well.”

Biden did not suggest that getting vaccinated would protect against hurricanes, nor did his hurricane preparedness suggestions consist solely of encouraging people to get their COVID-19 vaccine. Video of Biden’s comments can be seen here: 

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Alec Dent is a former culture editor and staff writer for The Dispatch.