MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Pfizer’s COVID vaccine has made it to Florida, with Jackson Health System expecting vials on Tuesday.
Ahead of the vaccine rollout, CBS4’s Peter D’Oench spoke with frontline workers at Jackson Memorial Hospital.
Some said they will take the vaccine right away, while others said they’ll will wait.
“Would you be taking it?” D’Oench asked Dr. Mary Sokoloski, a pediatric cardiology at JMH.
“Yes,” Dr. Sokoloski said.
“Why?” D’Oench followed up.
“I think it best for everyone over to take the vaccine,” Dr. Sokoloski said.
Over in Broward, Memorial Healthcare System received its initial shipment Monday morning. As per CDC guidelines, it’s being used to inoculate South Florida’s frontline workers in contact with COVID patients.
Dr. Sokoloski is grateful Jackson Memorial Hospital is next in line to receive the Pfizer vaccine.
“Does it give you room for optimism?” D’Oench asked.
“Yes, there’s a feeling of hope knowing it’s here. I think the more that get it the better,” Dr. Sokoloski said. “I think it’s gone through the right processes to get it approved.”
A social worker for 20 years, Peggy Jones-Gonzalez agrees.
“I feel excited. I mean 95%. Everybody should be able to get the vaccine. It’s fantastic,” she said.
Since March, they’ve been under tremendous stress.
“It’s been devastating. I lost a lot of patients,” Jones-Gonzalez said.
MORE FROM CBSMIAMI.COM
Miami-Dade Correctional Institution Sgt. Charged With Cocaine Trafficking
One Man Killed In Shooting At Oakland Park Flea Market
President Of Estefan Enterprises Frank Amadeo Dies At 57
Dr. Ari Ciment, who has been on the front lines since the very beginning of the pandemic, said he will be one of the first to receive the COVID shot at Mount Sinai Medical Center on Wednesday.
He hopes to set an example.
“The risk benefit ratio by far favors taking a vaccine that can potentially protect you from deadly disease, which we see every day,” he said.
Over 300 employees at Mount Sinai Medical Center have registered to get a vaccine.
“We anticipate initially about 1,500 vaccines with JMH,” said Angel Pallin, chief operating officer at Mount Sinai Medical Center. “But beyond that, we are really not sure yet.”
Dr. Alnuss Ammar is a surgeon at JMH.
“It’s very hard because you are risking your life,” Dr. Ammar said. “Those that rush to ED, trauma and you don’t know if they have it or not. And then to end up having it because you are trying to do your job and save lives.”
Despite that, Ammar said he will delay taking the vaccine.
“They say it’s a good and more than 90% effective, and they tried it on 40,000 people. But for me, personally, I would wait,” Dr. Ammar said. “I am trying my best to have social distancing and sanitizer and wearing a mask and doing my best to prevent COVID and I just want to wait and see what happens. If it shows it is super effective I would take it.”
Registered nurse Tangilar Dorsett agrees.
“I will not be one of the first to take it. I would probably wait and see and wait until they get the kinks out,” Dorsett said. “I did have the virus and one thing about the virus is very, very scary and I am one of those people with allergies, so I will wait.”
Dorsett does say this vaccine rollout means relief.
“I think it’s a great thing. I’m glad they are able to do something about the virus. Hopefully, I think it will work out,” Dorsett said.
“Does this virus mean hope for you?” D’Oench asked.
“Yes. Hope that it will save more lives,” Dorsett said.
While Dorsett herself contracted the coronavirus, Dr. Ammar told D’Oench that thankfully he did not.
Pfizer said nearly 3 million doses should be given in this first week nationwide.
Gov. Ron DeSantis said Jackson Memorial Hospital should be getting its first vaccines Tuesday, and that’s what JMH is hearing as well.