Healthcare workers who’ve received COVID-19 vaccine report no major side effects, LDH says

Updated: Dec. 16, 2020 at 5:42 PM CST
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Two days after the Pfizer-manufactured COVID-19 vaccine arrived in Louisiana and was administered to frontline healthcare workers, the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH) says there have been no reports of major side effects from those who have been vaccinated.

Some workers have reported minor reactions after receiving the shot such as redness on the skin or a sore arm.

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“I think that from any of the side effects, for the most part, they are very mild. When it comes to the vaccinations in the past. I’ve never had any allergic reactions. I’ve always done really well with vaccines. From my standpoint from a risk assessment I thought it was great,” Dr. Pam Simmons, a maternal-fetal medicine physician at Woman’s Hospital, tells WAFB.

Hospitals are not mandating their frontline workers to get the vaccine, therefore, some are choosing to wait considering this is the fastest a vaccine has ever been produced. However, other frontline workers say they are not worried at all and are eager to roll up their sleeves.

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“There’s no reason to fear this vaccine, there’s been a lot of talk about the vaccine, a lot of wonder. We’ve had 40,000 patients in trial ahead of us that have done well for months,” explains Dr. Lewis Minsky, who is the Chief of Staff at Baton Rouge General.

For the most part, healthcare workers who spoke to WAFB say they’re willing to do whatever it takes to protect their patients.

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“I think as physicians, we are role models and we are trying to set an example on who should get it, and if we are getting it ourselves I think it’s very a good sign that encourages people to go out and seek it as well,” says Dr. Mindy Bowie, who is a breast surgical oncologist at Woman’s Hospital.

All of the frontline workers that spoke with WAFB say they plan to continue wearing their masks while they wait for the second dosage of the COVID-19 vaccine.

WAFB’s Breanne Bizette will have more on this story on 9News at 5 and 6.

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