Woman participating in Tulane COVID-19 vaccine trial shares her experiences

Woman participating in Tulane COVID-19 trial shares her experiences

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - There’s some good news in terms of the race for a COVID-19 vaccine.

On Monday, Nov. 16, Moderna announced its vaccine appears to be almost 95% effective. Moderna is in fact the second company showing encouraging numbers in November when it comes to a possible vaccine.

This certainly doesn’t mean the fight against the virus is over though.

Monday night, WAFB spoke with a woman who’s taking part in the Janssen vaccine study at Tulane University in New Orleans. She says she wanted to be a part of history.

“You know, I have never done anything like this before, and it was really so easy,” said Erica Woodley, Dean of Students at Tulane University.

Woodley is 1 of 60,000 adults from across the world, taking part in the Janssen study, which is trying to find a safe and effective vaccine for COVID-19.

“For me it’s really cool to be something that’s really historic in nature. The other thing I would say is, as the Dean of Students at Tulane, this has been a rough semester. And you see that there are life and death consequences of COVID-19, but this is really impacting all of us everyday,” said Woodley.

Woodley was injected with the vaccine just recently.

“I had a little tenderness in my arm, but really no other side effects. And it’s a two year commitment which is a lot,” said Woodley.

Janssen is one of the many companies, trying to turn the tide against the coronavirus with a vaccine. Moderna announced their vaccine is close to 95% effective, and Pfizer says their vaccine is around 90% effective against the virus.

With the promising news of the new vaccine candidates, WAFB spoke with some folks to see if they would take a vaccine, when one becomes available.

“I haven’t got [coronavirus] yet, so I’m praying I don’t get it. So I don’t think I’d take it unless I had no choice,” said Vernon Gilliam Jr., a Baton Rouge resident.

“If I can get vaccinated and that helps keep me from spreading it to other people, then that’s even more beneficial. And if it keeps me from wearing a mask, it’s even better,” said Clay Lawson, who’s visiting Baton Rouge.

“It (a vaccine) just hasn’t been studied enough long term to warrant me getting it for safety reasons,” said Jennifer Fontenot, a Baton Rouge resident.

Woodley says we all have to play a part in this fight against COVID-19, and this is her doing just that.

“We’re not going to get back to a place, where we can live our lives and we can hug people and you know talk to strangers up close in their face, the things that we love to do, until we have some kind of vaccine. So I think that this is the time, to step up if you can,” said Woodley.

All of these vaccines will have been tested by tens of thousands of people before they will be distributed globally, obviously to the most vulnerable people in our population first, then to the general public.

Click here for more information about Tulane’s COVID-19 vaccine trials.

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