Teaching staff up next for covid vaccine

Doctor+drawing+up+Covid-19+vaccine+from+glass+phial+bottle+and+filling+syringe+injection+for+vaccination.+Close+up+of+hand+wearing+protective+disposable+gloves+in+lab+and+holding+a+bottle+of+vaccination+drugs.+Hand+with+blue+surgical+gloves+taking+sars-coV-2+vaccine+dose+from+vial+with+syringe%3A+prevention+and+immunization+concept.

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Doctor drawing up Covid-19 vaccine from glass phial bottle and filling syringe injection for vaccination. Close up of hand wearing protective disposable gloves in lab and holding a bottle of vaccination drugs. Hand with blue surgical gloves taking sars-coV-2 vaccine dose from vial with syringe: prevention and immunization concept.

Ashlynn Flory, BHS Journalism

All employees of USD #348 have recently been offered a chance to get the COVID vaccine. Each staff member was given the option to receive the vaccine or not. If they chose to, their name was put on a list for random selection. Some staff members have already been selected and have received their first shot.

“The Douglas County Health Department informs us of the number of vaccines available to our district each week,” USD 348 nurse Lisa Pattrick said. “The district then gives the health department the list of employees that are next on our randomized list and the health department contacts those staff members by email with the date and location of their vaccine.”

Each staff member who has signed up to get the vaccine is required to get two shots, both injections are done separately.

“Both Pfizer and Moderna require 2 injections, 21 days apart and 28 days apart, respectively,” Pattrick said. “Johnson is expected to release a 1 injection vaccine soon. All 3 vaccines are created with messenger RNA (mRNA). According to a very reliable source, the Mayo Clinic, coronaviruses have a spike-like structure on their surface called an S protein. COVID-19 mRNA vaccines give cells instructions how to make a harmless piece of S protein. After vaccination, your cells begin making the protein pieces and displaying them on cell surfaces. Your immune system will recognize that the protein doesn’t belong there and begin building an immune response and making antibodies to ward off the virus.”

The first group of employees had just received their first shot the first week of Februrary. 

“When the shot went in I felt a burning sensation,” BHS Science teacher Amanda Lyman said. “Then right after I felt fine. By the time I got home my arm was really sore like someone had punched my arm. My arm was sore for about 24 hours after.” 

Many studies have shown that the COVID vaccine is very effective.

“Pfizer reports it’s vaccine reduces the risk of COVID by 95%,” Pattrick said. “Moderna reports it’s vaccine as 94.1% effective. Johnson and Johnson reports their vaccine to be 85% effective overall in combating SARS-CoV-2. Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccine is effective 14 days after the 2nd dose, while Johnson and Johnson reports it is effective after 28 days.”