DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Of the more than 43,000 volunteers taking part in Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine trial, I happen to be one.
I became involved after signing up online this summer to be contacted about participation in ongoing trials.
Pfizer was the first of several companies pursuing a vaccine to respond.
Over the phone, the research group handling the study asked questions about my health, medical history and lifestyle.
The representative seemed particularly interested in making sure I’d not yet contracted the virus and that I was at some risk of exposure.
In late September, I received my first injection at a medical clinic in Keller.
Like everyone else involved, I don’t know if it contained the vaccine or a placebo.
The process is the same.
I was tested for COVID-19, gave urine and blood samples, and had my weight and temperature recorded.
I waited 30 minutes, the time it takes the vaccine, which is kept extremely cold, to reach room temperature, before a staff member delivered a surprisingly painless shot.
Three weeks later, I returned for a second dose.
The only symptoms I experienced were muscle soreness in my shoulder and possibly exhaustion, which could also have been caused by lack of sleep.
Once a week, I’m asked if I have any COVID-19 symptoms.
The one week I did have a cough, I was asked to take a COVID-19 test. I was negative.
Over the next year and half, I’ll be scheduled for occasional appointments to draw blood.
Once a vaccine becomes publicly available, I’ll have the option to find out if I received it already through the trial.
At any point, I can drop out.
Being a part of the trial has been time-consuming, especially as the clinic is 45 minutes from my home.
I’m doing it because I hope it will help to develop a vaccine.
I’m also hopeful I received the vaccine, reducing my chance of catching the virus and my chances of spreading it to my family.
To me, that alone makes it worth the hassle worth the risk.
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