Fayette County health officials receive second dose of Pfizer vaccine

FAYETTE COUNTY, WV (WOAY) – A few weeks ago Dr. Paul Conley with Plateau Health and Dr. Anita Stewart with the health department received their first doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. On Wednesday night they both received their second doses of the same vaccine. After receiving both doses of the vaccine the doctors said they had minimal reactions and they felt great.

“I got my vaccine and my next day I had a little bit of a sore arm and that’s pretty much all I had,” said Dr. Paul Conley with Plateau Health. “I don’t know about Dr. Stewart, but I didn’t have much.”

“I’m feeling great today,” said Fayette County Health Officer Dr. Anita Stewart. “I had minimal reactions after my first dose and I don’t have any issues right now and my arm is not even sore.”

Dr. Stewart says that getting both doses of either vaccine is crucial to having the higher immunity. The reason is because the first dose wakes up the immune system and gets it ready to fight the virus while the second dose acts as a booster by bringing the immunity level up to where it needs to be. The doctors also say it’s important to ensure that which ever vaccine product you get as the first dose you get the same for the second dose.

“That’s why it’s important that we stay in our lane,” Dr. Conley said. “If your Pfizer you stay Pfizer, if your Moderna you stay Moderna. Pfizer again twenty-one days, Moderna twenty-eight days.”

The full immunity of both doses takes about seven to fourteen days to hit its maximum effectiveness. That means that people still need to wash their hands, wear a mask and be socially distant even after they are vaccinated. Dr. Stewart says we need to reach herd immunity before restrictions can be lifted.

“When things were extrapolated a few weeks ago, before we had this new variant, they had extrapolated about seventy-five percent of the population or over two thirds of the population,” Dr. Stewart said. “I think it’s going to take awhile to get to those numbers and hopefully we can do that.”

As the distributions of the vaccines continue we will continue to get closer to that desired herd immunity, we just have to be patient in the mean time.

Both Dr. Conley and Dr. Stewart also said the distribution of vaccines is what they have been looking forward to since the start of the pandemic.