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Biden administration ending vaccine mandate for federal workers and international travelers

The Biden administration is ending the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for federal employees, federal contractors and other federally funded workers. It's also ending vaccine requirements for international travelers ahead of the busy summer travel season. 

The vaccine requirements will end May 11, when the Biden administration is officially declaring an end to the public health emergency. In April, Congress passed, and the president signed, an end to the national and public health emergencies related to the pandemic, effective immediately. 

The White House noted that 98% of federal employees received at least one dose of the vaccine or had a pending or approved exception. 

The end of the vaccine requirement for international travelers coming to the U.S. and for federally-funded workers is further evidence that the administration believes the U.S. has moved past the worst of the pandemic. 

"While vaccination remains one of the most important tools in advancing the health and safety of employees and promoting the efficiency of workplaces, we are now in a different phase of our response when these measures are no longer necessary," the White House said. 

Health and Human Services and the Department of Homeland Security also announced Monday that they will begin the process to end vaccination requirements for Head Start educators, as well as for Medicare and Medicaid services-certified health care facilities, and for some noncitizens at land borders. 

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