Massachusetts Doctor Describes How He Felt After Receiving COVID-19 Vaccine

Dr. Jorge Arroyo participated in Moderna's coronavirus vaccine trial

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A Massachusetts doctor who participated in Moderna's coronavirus vaccine trial is describing some of the symptoms he experienced.

Dr. Jorge Arroyo, a Harvard-affiliated ophthalmologist, told the Boston Globe he began experiencing nausea, chills and body aches about 10 hours after the second of two shots he received over the summer.

"It made me feel lousy, albeit for a day," he told the Globe. But he is still urging people to get the vaccine as soon as it becomes available, because the impacts of getting COVID-19 are far worse.

Gov. Charlie Baker said Massachusetts is expecting to receive 300,000 first doses by the end of December, with health care workers at the front of the line to receive them, followed by long-term care facilities.

He said one thing that will make it unique compared to other immunizations the state delivers each year is that it will require two doses.

Massachusetts is expected to receive 300,000 coronavirus vaccines this month, which will be the first dose of a two-dose regimen.

"So you've got to deliver the first dose, create a schedule for delivering the second dose, make sure people come back and get the second one," Baker said. "And we are working under a variety of guidelines and recommendations, with respect to how to tier the delivery of that vaccine to make sure you maximize the preservation of life and the support for the health care system."

Meanwhile, in England, a 90-year-old woman received the first shot in the country's coronavirus vaccination program Tuesday, the start of a global immunization effort intended to offer a route out of a pandemic that has killed 1.5 million people.

This week may prove to be a pivotal week for the U.S. An FDA advisory panel meets Thursday to consider approval of the Pfizer COVID vaccine, even as the United Kingdom plans their rollout tomorrow. Congress, meanwhile, is working to pass a financial relief bill for families and businesses affected by the ongoing pandemic.

The United Kingdom is the first Western country to start a mass vaccination program after British regulators last week authorized the use of a COVID-19 shot developed by U.S. drugmaker Pfizer and Germany’s BioNTech. U.S. and European Union regulators may approve the vaccine in coming days, fueling a global immunization effort.

Britain’s program is likely to provide lessons for other countries as they prepare for the unprecedented task of vaccinating billions of people. U.K. health officials have been working for months to adapt a system geared toward vaccinating groups of people like school children and pregnant women into one that can rapidly reach much of the nation’s population.

Other vaccines are also being reviewed by regulators around the world, including a collaboration between Oxford University and drugmaker AstraZeneca and the one developed by Moderna.

State House News Service contributed to this report.

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