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Local healthcare workers excited to receive vaccine

Published: Dec. 22, 2020 at 9:33 AM EST
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Ashli Scruggs may be a name you remember. WCTV brought you the story of the Valdosta nurse back in April, when Scruggs volunteered her services to help in New York City, which was the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since returning, she has continued to save lives.

Scruggs is just one of many who got what she calls ‘relief in a vial.’ On Monday she got her vaccination, which she was not expecting to receive until next week. For her and other healthcare professionals, this small dose brings protection and the promise of a return to normalcy.

”We are all healthcare providers and we are all doing the same thing,” says Scruggs. “we are trying to help people. Any little thing we can do we are going to jump in and do.”

Scruggs has spent 2020 working on the COVID front lines. In New York, she says there was a real fear, as nurses began learning more about the virus while trying to save lives.

”It is a very different situation from where we were in April to where we are now,” says Scruggs. “I am really happy that we have the vaccine.”

A vaccine which she was surprised to receive Monday. It’s a miracle she has been praying for since the pandemic started.

“I am super excited to have something that is going to help eliminate this, eradicate this or even put a damper in it for a period of time, where people can get back to normal,” she says. “This has been a horrible year for many many people and I just want others to get back to their normal life and not live in fear anymore.”

Other healthcare workers, like Nader Akhaven at Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare, are still waiting for their vial. Akhaven believes a vaccine can only help, but still encouraged people to continue with CDC guidelines.

“There is still a lot that we are learning and we will learn over time, so I recommend to keep with as many precautions as you can,” says Akhaven. “Just getting the vaccine does not mean that you can just forget about everything and stop washing your hands and wearing your masks. But it is a positive step in getting back to normal.”

These physicians put others’ health first, and now they are wanting others to follow suit,

”We wouldn’t be here without vaccines,” says Scruggs. “So just to have something that helps everybody do their part, I think is wonderful and I think everyone should partake in it.”

”We still got a ways to go,” says Akhaven. “But I think it’s a big step for everybody.”

Akhaven works in the COVID unit at TMH and believes he will receive a vaccine on Tuesday; however, TMH and Capitol Regional Medical Center have not yet released information on their vaccination shipments and dispersals.

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