"We need answers as to when it's going to be available for people like myself with highly compromised immune systems and to the general public."

By: KDKA-TV’s Jennifer Borrasso

PETERS TOWNSHIP, Pa. (KDKA) — A local family is wondering why they are not higher on the list to get a coronavirus vaccine.

Christine May, 56, is a breast cancer survivor and has a chronic health issue. She and her husband caught coronavirus last month. She wants a vaccine now but cannot get one.

“I was hoping I could stay well enough long enough to get the vaccine and that didn’t happen, unfortunately,” May said.

(Photo Credit: Provided)

She contracted the coronavirus after coming into contact with one of her clients. May and her husband, Joe, both landed in the emergency room on Christmas Eve.

“We couldn’t breathe. I was coughing so severely I was vomiting,” Christine said. “I’ve never had an illness like this and I’ve lived a lifetime being chronically ill.”

On Christmas Day, the couple left the hospital. Both are now recovering at home.

Like others who are high risk, Christine wants the vaccine now.

“Without the vaccine, I worry that I am going to get this again. I’m told I may have antibodies for three to four months. No one really knows for sure.”

She said her doctor’s office and pharmacist do not have answers.

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“We need answers as to when it’s going to be available for people like myself with highly compromised immune systems and to the general public,” Christine said.

Some have criticized the state’s slow phased vaccine rollout. Hospitals are vaccinating frontline health care workers, and pharmacies are vaccinating residents in long-term care facilities.

“I’m saying it’s not good enough. I’m worried I’m going to get this again,” Christine said. “We need a vaccine. Healthy people need it as well. But for people like us, you can’t live in your house. I need to work to support myself. I have a business. I’ve had to close it down again.”

A state Department of Health spokesperson told KDKA’s Jennifer Borrasso that the best estimate for the general public to have access to the vaccine will be late in the spring.

Christine has been bedridden for three weeks, has a horrendous cough and extreme fatigue.