Mask off! Well, not yet.
But Long Island, New York and America took a giant step toward normalcy Monday morning when a nurse on Long Island became among the first to receive Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine.
Northwell Health President and CEO Michael J. Dowling stood alongside Sandra Lindsay, a critical care nurse at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New Hyde Park, who was seated as a doctor injected the dose.
She is reportedly the first person in the U.S. to receive the vaccination.
Governor Andrew Cuomo witnessed the historic event via video conference, and spoke to the nurse on broadcast television.
He asked her if she’s feeling well, and she said she’s feeling fine.
“I would like to thank all the frontline workers, all my colleagues who’ve been doing a yeoman’s job fighting this pandemic all over the world,” Lindsay said.
They both encouraged others to get the vaccine, which was approved in record time through the Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed, a $14 billion program.
“It’s going to take months before the vaccine takes critical mass,” Cuomo said. “This is a light at the end of the tunnel, but it’s a long tunnel.”
The governor and the nurse also pleaded with people to still wear masks, maintain social distancing and other safety measures while the vaccine, and others to follow, do their work across the U.S.