The COVID Vaccine: Experience and Advice

Vaccines begin to make their way through CHS

Victoria Escobedo

Nearly a year after the virus’s appearance in December 2019, the COVID-19 vaccine was released on December 11, 2020. In Nueces County, people received their first dose of the Moderna vaccine on December 29, 2020, and on January 29, 2021. 19,000 people drove into the Corpus Christi-Nueces County Public Health District for the vaccines. Receiving the vaccine still requires people to wear masks and social distance, and while getting the vaccine is not yet mandatory, it is heavily encouraged to lower the risk of contracting the virus, so many people are choosing to take this route. Some of these people include the Calallen High School campus administrators.
Joanna Flores is a nurse at Calallen High School. She has received two doses of the Moderna vaccine, receiving her first dose in December 2020 and her second dose January 2021. She says that since receiving the vaccine, she’s felt safer.
“I don’t worry as much,” she explains, “Obviously, I still wear a mask and practice social distancing. But I know that if someone were to contract the virus in my family, I’ll at least be safe and can help them out.”
According to Flores, an estimated 50-60 administrators have been vaccinated in Calallen High School. However, Flores doesn’t think administrators need the vaccine unless necessary.
“Unless they are at risk or around a lot of people,” Flores reasons, “I don’t think it’s really necessary to get the vaccine.”
Flores’ opinions are different when it comes to the students though.
“I honestly wish we could provide every student with the vaccine,” Flores confesses, “But I know that’s not possible. I would, however, recommend it for younger children.”
As for advice for people trying to take the vaccine, Flores says to make sure that you are healthy beforehand. She advises to take Tylenol or pain medicine two hours after taking the first dose because she experienced headaches, dizziness, and soreness in her arm. When she received her second dose, Flores admitted to feeling sick as if she’d gotten a fever or cold, but that after a few hours, she was fine. Again, she recommends taking a Tylenol or pain medicine two hours after receiving the second dose.
For people who don’t want to take the vaccine, Flores says it’s understandable. She too was hesitant about taking the vaccine initially.
“From a nurse standpoint,” Flores said, “I knew I had to get the vaccine. But as a mom, I was unsure because I didn’t know about any of the side effects and it’s such a new medicine that not much is known about. So I completely understand why you might not want to take it.”
She assures that as long as you follow the current safety protocols and guidelines, you will be fine without taking the vaccine.
Nueces County is receiving more supply of the COVID vaccine every week, and vaccinations are available at local pharmacies and healthcare centers.