Black critical care nurse among 1st in US to receive COVID vaccine

Sandra Lindsay said she wanted to do her part to 'instill public confidence that the vaccine is safe'

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A Black nurse in Queens was among the first to receive Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine.

Sandra Lindsay is a critical nurse and patient services director in the intensive care unit at Long Island Jewish Medical Center. Lindsay is now the first to have received the vaccine for COVID-19 after volunteering.

Her injection was livestreamed during a press conference with Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday morning.

Sandra Lindsay Black nurse vaccine thegrio.com
Sandra Lindsay, left, a nurse at Long Island Jewish Medical Center, is inoculated with the COVID-19 vaccine by Dr. Michelle Chester, December 14, 2020 in the Queens borough of New York City. The rollout of the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine, the first to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration, ushers in the biggest vaccination effort in U.S. history. (Photo by Mark Lennihan – Pool/Getty Images)

Lindsay was administered by Dr. Michelle Chester, the director of employee health services at Northwell Health.

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“I feel great,” said Lindsay after being injected.

“Sandra, you didn’t flinch. I take it that Dr. Chester has a good touch,” Cuomo remarked to the nurse.

“She has a good touch. It didn’t feel any different from taking any other vaccine,” Lindsay replied.

Lindsay expressed her appreciation for her co-workers and other front line workers who have seen the devastation of the disease up close for the past nine months.

“I’ve been hopeful today,” Lindsay said to applause after being vaccinated. “I feel like healing is coming. I hope this marks the beginning of the end in a very painful time in our history.”

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According to the New York Times, New York has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic, with more than 35,000 deaths. Last week was a gruesome tally with over 10,000 deaths each day. Cuomo now feels that there’s now a light at the end of the tunnel.

“This vaccine is exciting because I believe this is the weapon that will end the war,” Cuomo said during the news conference. “We have planes, trains, and automobiles moving this all over the state right now. We want to get it deployed, and we want to get it deployed quickly.”

Dr. Anthony Fauci previously told theGrio that it was important for the Black community, who remain skeptical, to take the vaccine and help stop the virus’s spread. He stressed the real enemy is the coronavirus.

Lindsay hoped that her actions today would assure the public.

“I want to instill public confidence that the vaccine is safe, we’re in a pandemic and so we all need to do our part to put an end to the pandemic and not give up so soon,” said Lindsay.

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