COVID-19 diary from a Sanford nurse

Stacy has given thousands of vaccines; her mom died of COVID-19 too soon to get one

Portrait of a Sanford Health nurse in an exam room. Her shirt says "For you. For me. For all" with a vaccine needle icon.

Sanford Health News asked nurses to share their experiences with COVID-19 patients and their reasoning for getting vaccinated. These are Stacy’s words.

I am the travel and vaccine nurse at Sanford Health. I give thousands of vaccines, and I would never give vaccines that I don’t feel perfectly comfortable with knowing that they’re very, very safe.

The weird thing is I had COVID and then I had the monoclonal antibodies. So I had to wait a long time to get my vaccine.

I have gotten the COVID vaccine.

I got vaccinated because I feel that it’s incredibly important for us to all do our part. I believe in the science behind the vaccine and the safety in which it was created. I believe that the vaccine is not just for me. It’s for my neighbors. It’s for my family. It’s for immunocompromised people. I’ll do anything I can to protect those around me.

Before I chose to get the COVID vaccine, I did some of my own research. I talked to several physicians who I felt very comfortable with trusting with my health. I believe in the science, in which it was made. And I’ve felt that I needed to do this for anyone that I could help protect.

The reason why I think it’s very important to be vaccinated for COVID-19 is to stop the spread. We’re seeing many surges in the virus right now, and we all need to do our part in order to stop this spread.

With the spread of COVID-19 in our community, we’ve seen an increase in numbers of other illnesses too, as people are putting off their general health care because of the fear of COVID-19. As we get more people vaccinated, we are able to be out in public more and make sure that we are taking care of our general health.

My biggest story was with my mom and that she was not able to get the COVID vaccine because it wasn’t created before she passed away.

My mom was immunocompromised. She was in the hospital with COVID-19. She kept asking me how soon the vaccine was going to be ready. And she was excited to hear when I told her about the first vaccines given at Sanford Health. She was not able to get the vaccine because it was created too late for her. I would have done anything to get the vaccine earlier so I could have protected my mom.

During my mom’s first hospital stay, with her COVID-19, no visitors were allowed. So our only communication with her was over the phone. All of this happened before the vaccine. I just wished the vaccine would have come out sooner because we would have been the first in line. Mom kept asking about when it was going to come out and how soon she could get it. But it was just too late for her. I’d give anything for one more day with her.

I work in an infectious disease clinic. We see a lot of COVID-19 patients after they’ve been hospitalized or as they’re recovering; the recovery is long. We see people on oxygen who were healthy prior to any of this. It’s hard to see a healthy person who was a runner or an athlete who’s now on oxygen after having had COVID-19. So often we hear that they wish they would’ve gotten their vaccine before they got COVID-19.

As we see an increase in the number of hospitalizations due to COVID-19, the one thing that we do see consistently is that the number of admissions and people in the ICU and people on vents are very low if they’ve had the COVID-19 vaccine. We need to work hard to get our community vaccinated. We need to lower the numbers of people who are being admitted with this disease. It takes the whole community to work together, to be vaccinated so we can continue to fight this.

It takes the whole community working together, getting our vaccines to protect our community.

Get your COVID-19 vaccine. Don’t let this be your last regret.

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Posted In Coronavirus, Immunizations, Nursing and Nursing Support, Sanford Stories

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