First group of Jackson General workers get COVID-19 vaccine
JACKSON, Tenn. — It’s a historic moment in the COVID-19 pandemic.
The first dose of the Pfizer vaccine was given to several healthcare workers Friday afternoon.
Around 25 workers from different departments at Jackson-Madison County General Hospital lined up anxiously to get the vaccine.
“Without a doubt, this is what we need. It has been such a long time coming,” said West Tennessee Healthcare President and CEO James Ross.
“I’ve seen several pass, then seen a whole lot recover from it and go home, but it’s just sad about how many have passed away from this,” said Lynn Jones, the first person to receive the vaccine in Jackson.
She is one of the housekeepers on the COVID-19 cleaning team, so she cleans the hospital rooms of COVID-19 patients.
“I got it because I wanted to be safe, and be safe for my family,” Jones said.
She, among other workers, say they feel privileged and grateful to be among the first to get vaccinated.
Kathy Shaw works as a lab phlebotomist, and draws blood everyday. She says she sees a lot of sickness while interacting with patients.
“I want to be safe for myself, my family, my friends, and my coworkers, and then just everyday passerbys. I come in contact with not only my patients, but also their families,” Shaw said.
Josh Evans, who directs one of the COVID-19 units at Jackson General, says he’s ready to see the beginning of the end.
“Seeing what COVID-19 can do to people, and how hard it is on them and their families, I want to see the end of COVID-19,” Evans said. “I hope they never have to see what the nurses in the COVID-19 unit see that makes us so vocal about it.”
“It is just great to be able to see that the process, the flow, and the fact that our front line employees are being able to receive this vaccine,” Ross said.
Healthcare workers encourage you to get the vaccine once it’s available, if cleared by your doctor.
Hospital officials plan to continue giving the vaccines to workers through appointments.