Joe Biden received his first dose of the Coronavirus vaccine on Monday afternoon (Dec. 21). The president-elect got the Pfizer shot while at the ChristianaCare Hospital in Wilmington, Delaware, and hopes he will help to ease any safety concerns regarding the injection.
Biden’s vaccine was administered by Tabe Masa, a nurse practitioner and head of employee health services at the hospital. Moments later, he acknowledged frontline healthcare workers and shared a few words with viewers watching his televised appearance.
“I’m doing this to demonstrate that people should be prepared, when it’s available, to take the vaccine,” Biden said. “There’s nothing to worry about. I’m looking forward to the second shot.”
The president-elect applauded the Trump adminstration for the quick development of the vaccine. “I think the administration deserves some credit getting this off the ground with Operation Warp Speed,” he said. “This give us great hope.”
Despite exhibiting optimistic thoughts about the medication, Biden urged Americans to continue social distancing, wear their masks and reserve travel for necessary situations. “Because we’re still in the thick of this. It’s one thing to have the vaccine show up at a hospital, it’s another thing to get the vaccine from that vial into a needle, into an arm,” he said. “It’s going to take time.”
Biden’s vaccination comes a week after the first doses of the medication were administered to health care workers in New York. Sandra Lindsay — the Black nurse who received her first dose on live television — told reporters, “I want to instill public confidence that the vaccine is safe. We’re in a pandemic, and so we all need to do our part to put an end to the pandemic and not give up so soon.”
Biden’s wife, Jill, also received the Pfizer shot on Monday (Dec. 21). Kamala Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff, are expected to get vaccinated next week.
The Pfizer vaccine requires two separate doses to reach 95% efficacy, but it’s uncertain when Biden will receive his second dose.