Vaccine Update: District’s staff receives COVID-19 vaccine

High+School+teacher+Stephan+Brumbaugh+poses+with+vaccination+card+which+shows+receipt+of+receiving+the+COVID-19+vaccine.+

Photo courtesy of Stephan Brumbaugh

High School teacher Stephan Brumbaugh poses with vaccination card which shows receipt of receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

RIley Merrick, Staff Writer

While trying to get the country back to normal after getting hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, many are turning to the COVID-19 vaccine for some hope. About 70% of Piper High School’s teachers have been able to receive the vaccine as Kansas is in Phase 2 of 5 of vaccine handouts.

There are currently three vaccine options being offered, Pfizer, Moderna, and newly outed Johnson and Johnson vaccines. The Pfizer vaccine was the first to be available to the public, then Moderna, and finally Johnson and Johnson.

“I got the Pfizer two-dose vaccine,” culinary and life planning teacher Taylor Spangler. “I would have gotten the Moderna vaccine since it is the next most effective.”

The first dose was available for teachers on Friday, Jan. 29. About half of the district’s teachers got it this day and the other half that signed up received it Friday, Feb. 5.

The teachers received their second dose three weeks from their first vaccination. However, there was another portion of teachers that did not receive the vaccine.

“I’m not against having a vaccine available, I chose not to be vaccinated at this time,” said business teacher Brian Gray. “I think there should be a vaccine available for people with health issues and elderly people. I would like to see more data and information on the effectiveness of the vaccine. If I was older or in poor health I would be first in line.”

I would like to see more data and information on the effectiveness of the vaccine. If I was older or in poor health I would be first in line”

— Brian Gray

According to the Unified Government Of Wyandotte County Kansas City, there are two locations in Wyandotte County that are vaccination stations, which include the old K-Mart building on State Avenue and the old Best Buy building located on Parallel Parkway.

According to Spangler, both facilities worked effectively and were “well organized, easy to navigate, and equipped to handle a lot of people at once.”

One downside to getting the vaccine is that there is a chance that you can have some side effects or COVID-19 symptoms after receiving the vaccine, which is expected when receiving this type of shot.

Some of the main side effects and symptoms include fatigue, muscle pain, headache, chills, and pain at the injection site. These effects are known to usually only last for 48 hours after vaccination.

“I had mild symptoms but only with the second dose,” said sophomore Claire Robinson. “I had some soreness on my arm from it. I also was a little bit achy and nauseous for about an hour, 24 hours after the second shot.”

Robinson helps her mom with her in-home daycare, allowing her to be eligible to receive the vaccine.

According to the CDC, studies have shown that the vaccines are effective in reducing COVID-19 risk, and if they do happen to get it, it can help them from being seriously ill.

Scientists are still learning how well vaccines prevent recipients from spreading the virus. All of this speculation, it could cause people to be wary about getting the vaccine, which could make pro-vaccinators upset.

“I’d tell people that they are not the only ones being affected by their choice to not get vaccinated,” Spangler said. “By not trying to stop the spread of COVID-19 by not getting vaccinated or not wearing face coverings, you are putting those around you at risk; and not just strangers that you see out in the world, but your friends and family members as well.”