The first COVID-19 vaccine for the state was administered this morning at Ochsner Health in New Orleans.  Dr. Leonardo Seoane, a Pulmonary Critical Care Physician who also oversaw clinical trials of the Pfizer vaccine was the first to be inoculated on this historic day.

“As a Cuban-American and a first-generation immigrant of this country it’s really an honor and privilege to be part of the solution for something that we know has been so impactful for the Hispanic community,” said Seoane.

According to the CDC, Blacks, American Indians, and Latinos are 2.7 times more likely to die from COVID compared to whites.

Dr. Obinna Nnedu an Infectious Disease Senior Physician at Ochsner was among the first physicians to receive the Pfizer vaccine, he wanted to reassure the public that might be apprehensive about the vaccine.

“It’s understandable, but this has gone through all the basic steps that a vaccine would normally go through. It’s been vetted by multiple layers of scientists, the data has been examined and it definitely safe,” said Nnedu.

Dr. Robert Hart, Chief Medical Officer at Ochsner reminded those who were vaccinated today to follow up in 21 days with the second shot to receive maximum protection which has been shown to be 95-percent effective with the booster shot.

“We’ll get that scheduled for you and you’ll be ready to go. But you will continue to wear the mask, and socially distance, we’re not ready to give up on that yet,” said Hart.  The general public is expected to receive vaccinations next spring.

(Story written by Brooke Thorington/Louisiana Radio Network)

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