COVID-19 vaccine: More than a simple shot in the arm

Vaccine shot in the arm

By Cindy Gisler, Product Marketing Manager, Analytics

An appreciation for those working behind the scenes

I was talking to a friend the other day. He just received the first of his two-part COVID-19 vaccination. I am hearing about more and more people who received their vaccination. The light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel seems to be getting brighter every day thanks to this miraculous vaccination and those working behind the scenes to get it into arms at unprecedented speed. Knowing what it took to get that vaccine to my friend’s arm, I was curious what he thought about his experience. So, I asked him. He gave me a quick rundown.

A COVID-19 vaccination experience

My friend signed up, was given an appointment, filled out some necessary paperwork and was on his way to his first vaccine. With paperwork in hand, he showed up at the hospital at his designated time. After lining up, he presented his paperwork, patiently working through the processing system. He was then escorted into a small room where a nurse and doctor met him. After some discussion, the doctor left the room and returned with a small metal box. The box contained syringes prepared with COVID-19 vaccines. My friend was given his first vaccination. Immediately afterwards, he was asked to remain at the hospital for 15 minutes so he could be observed for any reactions from the immunization. He was led into another room where he sat with about twenty other people who were all watching a clock on the wall. When the time on the clock corresponded to the time on his sticker, he left. On the way out of the room, he was asked how he was feeling. After he gave a quick nod, he was free to go. Vaccine number one, done! As he was sharing his story, he mentioned the biggest bottleneck in the process was the time it took to find parking.

Sounds simple, right? Nothing to it. However, behind the scenes of this simple shot in the arm is a daily grind for thousands of workers and sometimes relentless work.

Behind the scenes

My friend received his vaccine almost a year to the day that SARS-CoV-2 was identified. Within that year, governments rallied scientists, public health agencies, companies, and citizenry to minimize the spread of the virus and develop therapeutics and, most importantly, vaccines. Manufacturers have been working overtime to provide equipment, instruments, and PPE. It’s been an exhausting year for many, to say the least.

Doing our part

Cole-Parmer, for its part, has been behind the scenes supporting COVID-19 vaccine research and development, vaccine production, and distribution via the vaccine cold chain for many of the companies working on these vaccine initiatives.

An exceptional job done and more to do

What has been done so far in one year should be recognized as nothing less than miraculous. Many brilliant individuals, working tirelessly, sequenced the SARS-CoV-2 genome, developed vaccines, identified vaccine candidates, initiated clinical studies to validate safety and efficacy of the vaccines, worked out complicated cold chain logistics to distribute vaccines, and are administering vaccines to ensure my friend could be one of the first to find his way back to normalcy. But more work must be done with more vaccines to be approved and millions of doses to be manufactured and distributed. I appreciate all the hard work being done by everyone involved to get the first of the vaccines administered in record time.

I wonder if my friend appreciates everything that went into that shot.


Related Blog Posts about Vaccines

Learn More About Messenger RNA (mRNA) Vaccines
Vaccines: How Pathogens Work Against Disease
Cole-Parmer Recognized as COVID-19 Vaccine Partner

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