PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — According to UPMC, more than 40 percent of its health care employees who work with patients have been vaccinated for the coronavirus.
That is more than 30,000 people. On Tuesday, the 10 workers who received their first round of the Pfizer vaccine on Dec. 14, 2020, were back in the chair.
Heather Majewski, a volunteer and X-ray technician, was one of those people. She has moved from the radiology room to the front lines, swabbing specimens for UPMC’s coronavirus testing.
“As you swab these patients, they are coughing and they are sneezing all over you and then you see the results later and they’re positive and you’re like, ‘Oh, boy,'” said Majewski.
After getting her first dose last month, Majewski said she experienced a minor headache and injection site pain.
After Tuesday’s injection, Majewski said, “I’m feeling great right now. No symptoms to report at this moment. But I’m expecting some injection site soreness again. We will see.”
When getting a coronavirus vaccine, Dr. Donaly Yealy — UPMC’s senior medical director and chair of emergency medicine — said, “You get introduced to part of a virus, the whole virus that’s been killed, or in this case a piece of material that allows your body to develop a response.”
Why the second dose?
“It needs to get one more tweak to make sure you have maximum protection,” said Dr. Yealy.
Regarding how long will protection last once vaccinated, the research is ongoing, but doctors believe it could be around one year. Doctors also remind the public that it is not uncommon for people to become infected with a virus after being vaccinated for it.
This is why health officials are still stressing the importance of masking and social distancing.