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Some Columbus residents worry about contracting COVID-19 between vaccine doses

Published: Feb. 25, 2021 at 11:29 AM EST
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Sharon Hightower got her first dose of Moderna’s COVID vaccine just over two weeks ago, but is getting restless and worried between shots.

“I just decided I needed the first shot so badly so I could live,” Hightower said.

Like many, she wants to see her friends, and travel to see family, but says it is too risky knowing she is still at high risk to catch COVID-19, even with the first dose of the vaccine.

“I don’t mind being all alone, but constantly?” she said. “It is just too hard, you just give up. But I don’t want to give up!”

News Leader 9 took Hightower’s concern to Pamela Kirkland at the Columbus Health Department and she confirms it is possible to catch COVID-19 between doses of the vaccine, but is unlikely, if you take the right precautions.

“Mask wearing, social distancing washing your hands, all that stuff,” Kirkland said.

The Food and Drug Administration says that the Moderna vaccine can provide roughly 80 percent protection after just one dose. When someone receives a second dose, it jumps to 96 percent effective. But only 86 percent in those over 65 years old like with Hightower.

Now with Pfizer and Bio N Tech, it is roughly 52% effective after the first dose.

“And even after their second dose they are going to need to wait two weeks before their immunity builds up in their system,” Kirkland said.

If you are waiting on your second dose, Kirkland suggests doing things that can boost your immune system in the meantime like taking vitamin C and zinc.

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