The first COVID-19 vaccines arrived in Powell River in January, and with them a sense of excitement and hope that we are seeing the beginning of the end of the pandemic.
Care Aide Hailey Unger was excited to be among the first to be vaccinated.
“I felt a bit nervous the night before, just because it is something new. But I am confident in the research I have seen regarding vaccine safety, and once I got it, I felt very relieved and grateful to be in one of the first groups in town to be offered the vaccine.”
Hailey’s daily work involves caring for the elderly and she sees the vaccine as one more step she can take to protect herself, her clients, and her family. “It’s one more layer of protection against the virus, and it gives me some peace of mind.”
The process of getting vaccinated was carried out seamlessly by the administering nursing staff, she says. The way it all rolled out eased any anxiety she was feeling.
“The nurse I saw asked me about allergies, previous reactions to vaccines, and she then she went through information about the vaccine, as well as side effects that I might experience one to two days after the injection. She gave me the shot – which was done and over with before I even realized what was happening. I waited for 15 minutes to make sure there was no immediate reaction, and then I was done!”
The only side effects Hailey experienced were a bit of soreness at the site of the injection, and a bit of fatigue the same day.
“My experience with this vaccine was a positive one, and I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to get it.”
Over the coming weeks and months the vaccine will be available to more people in our community, according to the provincial roll out plan, which you can see on the BC Government’s website.
Understandably, people have questions about the vaccine, and there are many resources that provide reliable answers. These include Health Canada, Immunize BC, and the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC). The Powell River Division of Family Practice puts out weekly updates which includes information with local perspective. You can see them at https://prcomplexclinic.com/covid-news-powell-river/ or on facebook @prdivisionoffamilypractice.
Seeing vaccines coming to Powell River provides a sense of relief, Hailey says.
“At the beginning of the pandemic I felt a lot of uncertainty and stress and worry, but I think as time has gone on and we’ve seen how well Powell River has been doing as a whole it’s reassuring to see that we are all working together and moving forward to get through the pandemic as a community.”
This article was first published in the February 2021 issue of Powell River Living Magazine.