NEW YORK — Health care workers in the city, including a nurse in Queens who got the first shot in the country, began receiving a second and final dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Monday.
Sandra Lindsay, a critical care nurse at Long Island Jewish Medical Center, was administered her second shot Monday. Mid-December, Lindsay became the first person in New York and the nation to receive a vaccine shot outside of clinical trials.
"I feel like I've completed kind of the marathon, I've closed the loop. I know we're not out of the woods yet, we don't have that herd immunity yet, but the burden feels much lighter today and I am very, very grateful," Lindsay said after getting her second shot. "Also, having the opportunity to be on multiple platforms and letting everybody know how vaccines are safe without dismissing their hesitancy and fears."
The second shot for the coronavirus vaccine is going out to health care workers in NYC, including Sandra Lindsay.— Spectrum News NY1 (@NY1) January 4, 2021
She's a nurse from #Queens who was the first person in the country to get the shot. #NY1Health https://t.co/1Qsf6geE28 pic.twitter.com/dgwIqnstIz
Lindsay says she has experienced no side effects, and is encouraging people to learn about the vaccine.
The city's plan — like elsewhere in the United States — is to first administer the vaccine to those at greatest risk of contracting the virus. The health commissioner said at the time the first vaccine was administered in the city that the hope was to have enough vaccine supply in early 2021 to expand the circle to begin giving shots to those who live in the 27 neighborhoods that were hit the hardest by the coronavirus.
But the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination has been behind schedule nationwide, including in New York City, as the campaign enters its fourth week.
Plagued by logistical issues, about 391,400 coronavirus vaccines have been delivered to the city as of January 3, but only 104,910 people have received their first dose.
On Monday, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced expanded eligibility for those who can get the COVID-19 vaccine, while urging the state and federal government's cooperation to allow the city to reach its goal of 1 million doses by the end of January.
Starting January 4, testing site workers, contact tracers, outpatient and ambulatory care providers, dentists, physical therapists, NYPD medical staff and workers at specialized clinics like dialysis centers will be able to receive the vaccine.
As part of its vaccination campaign, the city said it plans on doubling its current vaccination capacity. As of Monday, there are 125 vaccination sites across the city. By the end of the week, they plan on 160 sites to be available for the vaccine and 250 sites by the end of the month.
This story includes additional reporting by Anna Lucente Sterling.
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