Deerfield Beach, Florida – Broward Health North began inoculating its team of frontline caregivers with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine on Monday, December 21, 2020.
James McCrae, RN and nurse manager of the Critical Care Unit,was the first frontline healthcare worker at Broward Health North to be vaccinated.McCrae, a veteran who dutifully served in the United States Army, has worked at Broward Health North for more than 20 years, having worked his way up the ranks to now oversee his unit. He was vaccinated by longtime co-worker Rosietta Da Silva, an ICU nurse.
“It felt good to vaccinate James because he’s a great leader and I felt really honored to give him his shot,” said Da Silva.“James has a unique ability to make his staff feel at ease in a high stress environment and leads by example.”
McCrae wanted to be the first to receive the vaccine to show his team they had nothing to fear and that the being vaccinated better protects frontline workers and the community.
“It gives me an added layer of protection after all this time of going into the COVID unit and the unknown,” McCrae said.“With this shot I have a greater sense of security, and also by getting vaccinated I hope I encourage a lot of my staff to get vaccinated as well.That’s one of the reasons I’m proud to be the first at Broward Health North.”
Dr. Leon Garner, D.O.,an Emergency Department physician at Broward Health North, was the second frontline healthcare worker to be vaccinated.
“We’ve been waiting nine months for this vaccine,” said Garner“Now, a little bit of the fear frontline workers have will be alleviated.It is just a great feeling.”
“Once the vaccines become widely available, I encourage everyone in the community to get vaccinated,” added Garner.“We all still need to take precautions. Wear your mask in public, stay at home as much as you can, but the end is in sight now.”