Respiratory therapist Sarah MacKenzie was among the first wave of health-care professionals in Central Zone to receive the COVID vaccine last week. She has been sharing her experiences with many who are curious about the vaccine.
Photo from Alberta Health Services

Respiratory therapist shares her COVID vaccine experiences

Sarah MacKenzie among just over 300 central Alberta health workers to get vaccine so far

So many people wanted to know what getting the COVID vaccine was like respiratory therapist Sarah MacKenzie took to Facebook Live for the first time to share her experiences.

About 20 people, including friends and family, had tuned in at one point as she provided a 24-hour update since she got the Pfizer vaccine at Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre last Wednesday.

MacKenzie, who provides respiratory therapy through home care in Red Deer, was among more than 300 physicians and other health professionals in central zone to get the first doses of the vaccine by Christmas Eve.

Physically, getting the shot has been almost a non-event. Her arm was slightly sore, but the side effects were much less pronounced than her yearly flu shot, which often leaves her with an aching arm, as well as fatigue and nausea.

“I didn’t find any of that with the COVID vaccine.”

READ MORE

Central Albertan respiratory therapist among first to get COVID vaccine

500 new COVID-19 cases in Alberta

Getting the vaccine and her willingness to go public with her story has been an overwhelmingly positive experience, only marred by online comments from a handful of skeptics.

“I was prepared for there to be a few trolls,” said MacKenzie, who posts to Facebook and Instagram. “I was prepared no matter what response I got to not engage with people who were negative.

“For the most part, I’d say 95 per cent of people were really positive,” she said on Monday from her Lacombe home. “Everyone was really interested in how I was doing at the 24-hour mark.

“Overall, it was a really positive experience.”

Family members, including her parents in Lacombe, and three uncles who are doctors, were thrilled for her.

“They were so excited that I was in the first wave,” she said.

24 hours post Phizer/BioNtech Vaccine- update from Sarah

Posted by Sarah MacKenzie on Thursday, 24 December 2020

MacKenzie has been on holidays since she got the vaccine so has not visited her home care clients yet. But she is looking forward to sharing her story and knows they will get a lift as well.

She will get the second of her two shots on Jan. 13 and continues to wear a mask and observe the health protocols that have been in place for many months now.

MacKenzie expects to get more information about what to expect from the vaccine when she goes in for her second shot.

There has been much public discussion since she got her vaccine about the emergence of a COVID mutation, that has now made its way to Canada.

Alberta Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw has said the Pfizer vaccine that MacKenzie and other Albertans have received or will be receiving soon is expected to protect against the mutation.



pcowley@reddeeradvocate.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

‘Love, Oran’ is a documentary feature made by Red Deer-raised filmmaker Colin Scheyen. It’s about hidden letters, found in a Woodlea home after 70 years, revealing a family secret. (Screenshot by Advocate staff).
Hidden letters reveal secrets of Red Deer family in a new documentary film

‘Love, Oran,’ by filmmaker Colin Scheyen is showing at Edmonton’s NorthwestFest

Red Deer Rebels' three graduating players, Josh Tarzwell (left), Chris Douglas (middle) and Ethan Anders (right) will all move on to new opportunities next season. (Photo by ROB WALLATOR/Red Deer Rebels)
‘It was a rollercoaster’: Rebels’ graduating players look back on wild season

The nerves. Even three and a half years later, Josh Tarzwell still… Continue reading

Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer addressed the city in a Facebook Live video Wednesday and asked citizens to continue to be diligent in the battle against COVID-19. (Photo by LANA MICHELIN/Advocate staff).
‘It’s affecting us all’: Veer encourages city to come together in response to COVID-19

Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer is gravely concerned about the growing COVID-19… Continue reading

Alberta Health Services locked the Whistle Stop Cafe in Mirror on Wednesday morning after owner Christopher Scott refused to comply with health orders. Photo by Paul Cowley/Advocate staff
UPDATED: AHS shuts down Whistle Stop Cafe for defying health orders

Justice minister promises to get tough with those ignoring public health orders

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland joins Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as they participate in a virtual discussion from Ottawa on Monday, May 3, 2021, with seniors from Residence Memphremagog in Magog, Quebec. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Federal budget ‘overstates’ economic impact of stimulus spending, budget officer says

OTTAWA — Parliament’s spending watchdog says the federal Liberals’ budget overestimates how… Continue reading

A dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination is prepared at a mobile clinic for members of First Nations and their partners, in Montreal, Friday, April 30, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Health Canada maintains getting immunized ASAP with any vaccine offered is best

OTTAWA — Health Canada’s chief medical adviser says her advice has not… Continue reading

FILE - This Sunday, April 10, 2011 picture shows a rig and supply vessel in the Gulf of Mexico, off the cost of Louisiana. Thirteen states sued the Biden administration Wednesday, March 24, 2021 to end a suspension of new oil and gas leases on federal land and water and to reschedule canceled sales of offshore leases in the Gulf of Mexico, Alaska waters and western states. The Republican-leaning states, led by Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry, seek a court order ending the moratorium imposed after Democratic President Joe Biden signed executive orders on climate change on Jan. 27.     (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
Report finds climate change rarely part of Atlantic Canada’s fisheries management

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — Climate change is rarely factored into management decisions… Continue reading

Pharmacist Barbara Violo shows off a vile of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine after providing doses to customers at the Junction Chemist, which is a independent pharmacy, during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Friday, March 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
New Brunswick reports blood clot death in connection with Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine

FREDERICTON — New Brunswick health officials on Wednesday reported the province’s first… Continue reading

FILE PHOTO
Avoid mixed messaging with any mix-and-match vaccine plan: CEO

Public health doctors and immunologists in Canada are calling for a wait-and-see… Continue reading

Passengers from New Delhi wait in long lines for transportation to their quarantine hotels at Pearson Airport in Toronto on Friday April 23, 2021. Transport Minister Omar Alghabra says the resumption of international travel requires a coordinated approach for testing and a common platform for recognizing the vaccinated status of travellers. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Canada supports ‘common platform’ to recognize vaccine status of travellers: Alghabra

OTTAWA — Transport Minister Omar Alghabra says the resumption of international travel… Continue reading

Toronto FC midfielder Richie Laryea (22) and Vancouver Whitecaps midfielder Caio Alexandre (8) compete for the ball during the second half of an MLS soccer match, Saturday, April 24, 2021, in Orlando, Fla. Unable to dig itself out of a deep first-leg hole, Toronto FC exited the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League on Tuesday at the hands of Cruz Azul. THE CANADIAN/AP/Phelan M. Ebenhack
Toronto FC exits CONCACAF Champions League at the hands of Mexico’s Cruz Azul

Mexico to face either MLS champion Columbus Crew SC or Monterrey in the August semifinals

Most Read