Maryland receives first shipment of COVID-19 vaccine
BALTIMORE, Md. – Five University of Maryland Medical System healthcare workers received COVID-19 Pfizer vaccines on Monday.
Two physicians, a nurse, a respiratory therapist and an environmental service worker were vaccinated.
UMMS received one tray of 975 vaccine doses and is in the process of allocating doses across the System, with additional vaccine delivery expected later this week.
Mohan Suntha, MD, MBA, President and CEO of UMMS said, “As we begin vaccinations, and finally begin the process of ending this pandemic, I’m thankful to our UMMS and UM School of Medicine colleagues who have been working tirelessly to care for our community and lead in the development of innovative treatments and vaccines.”
The first UMMS employee to receive the vaccine was Shawn Hendricks, the Nursing Director of Medicine at the University of Maryland Medical Center. Hendricks has been affected by the pandemic personally. She said her mother spent two months recovering from COVID and her brother and brother-in-law were also diagnosed with the infection.
“I’ve seen enough death and dying. It’s already hit my family, and I don’t want it to hit my household,” she said.
Hendricks said she was proud to be the first person vaccinated at UMMS, and she encourages others to get a vaccination when they’re able to.
“I am a nurse on the frontlines of caring for COVID patients and I believe in the science behind the vaccine,” she said. “I want my family and I to be safe from getting COVID. Unless people start to get vaccinated, I think this pandemic will last longer, and get worse.”
When asked what receiving the vaccine felt like, Hendricks said, “It wasn’t cold…there just weren’t any issues and it didn’t even really hurt.”
The Pfizer vaccine is administered in two doses, three weeks apart.