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Refugees board buses that will take them to a processing center after they arrive at Dulles International Airport after being evacuated from Kabul. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The U.S. has set up a coronavirus vaccination site for Afghans arriving at the Dulles International Airport in Virginia, a White House official told Axios.

State of play: Upon arrival, all Afghan evacuees are first tested for the virus and vaccines are then offered to those who test negative. The Federal Emergency Management Agency set up the vaccination site at the Dulles Expo center, and the vaccines are being administered by the Department of Health and Human Services, the White House official said.

  • State Department translators are available to answer any vaccine-related questions.
  • The evacuees are being offered the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
  • Those who test positive for COVID-19 are put in quarantine.
  • AP first reported the story.

Between the lines: All "humanitarian parolees" are required to get vaccinated for coronavirus if they do not have proof of prior vaccination.

  • They are also required to get vaccinated for measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) and polio.

What they're saying: "This operation has been stood up in real time to ensure we are not wasting one minute and making sure everyone arriving in the United States is able to enter the country safely and not spread COVID-19," the White House official said.

The big picture: About 1.2 million vaccine doses had been administrated in Afghanistan, a country of 40 million, as of Aug. 20, per the World Health Organization.

  • UNICEF confirmed earlier this week that there was an 80% drop in vaccinations after the Taliban takeover of the country as people prioritized their "safety and security."

What to watch: A second mass vaccination site for arriving Afghans is expected to be launched soon at the Philadelphia International Airport.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with additional details.

Go deeper

Oct 18, 2021 - Health

Over 30 states have limited officials' public health powers

Photo: Ringo Chiu/AFP via Getty Images

Republican lawmakers in more than 30 U.S. states have weakened health officials' authority to implement policies to protect the public against the coronavirus, the New York Times reports.

The big picture: Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, lawmakers in all 50 states have introduced bills to curb state and local officials' public health authority.

Oct 18, 2021 - Axios Twin Cities

Minnesota offers cash and chance at $100K scholarship as vaccine incentive for teens

Expand chart
Data: Minnesota COVID-19 Response; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

Minnesota is offering new incentives to shot-wary teens in an effort to boost the state's COVID-19 vaccination rates.

Driving the news: 12 to 17 year olds who get both doses over the next six weeks will receive a $200 Visa gift card, Gov. Tim Walz's administration announced Monday.

  • Kids vaccinated during this period can also enter a lottery for one of five $100,000 scholarships to attend any of the state's public or private colleges or universities.

Why it matters: Public health officials say increasing vaccination rates among young Minnesotans is key to curbing spread of the virus, especially in schools.

Biden meeting with key House Democrats

President Biden. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

President Biden is hosting two separate in-person meetings with moderate and progressive House members at the White House on Tuesday as infrastructure negotiations continue, White House officials told Axios.

Why it matters: This is the latest in the president’s efforts to appease the more volatile parts of his party’s coalition as Democrats wrangle over how to cut his social spending proposal down from $3.5 trillion to closer to $2 trillion.