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Hartford Healthcare workers receive second dose of COVID-19 vaccine

Even though vaccines are rolling out, people are still being reminded to wear their masks and wash their hands.

Three weeks have passed since history was made in Connecticut, when the first doses of the Pfizer vaccine arrived at Hartford Healthcare. On Monday, Those healthcare workers returning for their second dose of the vaccine, completing their immunity process.

Keith Grant, Senior Assistant Director said “For the medical and clinical scientific community, this whole time we were hoping for a cure, a vaccine so to speak. Having that physical contact with the vaccine manifested that belief and it was exceptionally hopeful”.

While it is a hopeful time, and a step in the right direction, officials said it’s important to remain diligent in stopping the spread of Covid-19. While the vaccine is a light at the end of the tunnel, it’s not a light switch to the end of the virus. They say 65-80% of the population would still need to be immunized to get any sort of herd immunity.

“I think overtime we will get there, if you look at how much we’ve distributed over the last few weeks, but we still have a ways to go. I don’t think we’re going to have a normal, I think we’re going to have to have a new normal, redefine a new normal” said Grant.

Hartford Healthcare has administered over 15,000 vaccines thus far. According to Governor Ned Lamont, Connecticut is leading the charge for vaccinations, ranking #1 in the North East, and sixth in the country. Still, nationwide, the country is lagging behind initial vaccination goals.

Melisha Cumberland, one of the first people to be vaccinated in the state, is honored to be a part of this change that’s necessary to stop this deadly virus. “I think this is a huge shot of hope for not just here in Connecticut, for our world, to have this vaccine here. This is a shot of hope because it is giving us back some sense of normalcy. It is the light at the end of the tunnel. It is giving us that relief that we’re almost there. We’re getting through this” says Cumberland.

Frontline Healthcare workers have been working tirelessly since the start of the pandemic. Jasmine Ortiz, a Patient Care Associate in the Emergency Department at Hartford Hospital was thrilled to be a part of history during the first round of vaccinations, and her enthusiasm continues about her decision today. “The one thing I’m really excited about is working with my patients without the crippling fear and anxiety” says Ortiz.