According to The Associated Press, four healthy volunteers took part in the first-stage study of a potential COVID-19 vaccine on Monday.
Coronavirus vaccine testing begins in people as U.S. researchers give volunteer first experimental shot in Seattle. https://t.co/1dc7BEmvDN— The Associated Press (@AP) March 16, 2020
Jennifer Haller, 43, of Seattle and the first participant, told the AP, “We all feel so helpless. This is an amazing opportunity for me to do something.” After getting the injection, she reportedly said with a smile, “I’m feeling great."
Neal Browning, 46, of Bothell, Washington, who also took part in the test explained his daughters are proud that he volunteered, telling the AP, “Every parent wants their children to look up to them,” and said he told his kids to not brag to their friends. “It’s other people, too. It’s not just Dad out there.”
Despite this possible milestone in the fight against coronavirus, the AP notes this is just the beginning of a series of studies on human subjects in order to determine if the shots are effective and safe. Dr. Anthony Fauci of the U.S. National Institutes of Health previously noted a vaccine would not be available for widespread use for 12 to 18 months.
In a later interview, Jenifer explained to CNN's Chris Cuomo what inspired her to take part in this groundbreaking trial.
"I am so privileged in my life to be healthy and to have family and friends around," she told CNN. "I work for a company that allows the flexibility to take time off and to work remotely whenever I need. I just have a huge privilege that I can do those things." Adding, "And so so many Americans right now do not have that privilege and are concerned about paying rent, certainly losing their jobs, how they're going to feed their family. There's so much that other people are worried about right now."
*Stay informed on the latest information on the coronavirus from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization and learn about prevention methods and what to do if you are infected.