Hayes students receive vaccines at school-hosted clinic

covid virus

Amanda Stevens, Staff Writer

Note: This story is part of our ongoing coverage about the Covid-19 vaccine. Click here for an in-depth visual of the current status of vaccination rollout.

In mid-April, students ages 16 and older were able to receive their first dose of vaccine against Covid-19 at Hayes.
In a partnership with the Delaware Public Health District, Delaware City Schools arranged an opportunity for age-eligible students to get vaccinated.
“Once the vaccines were made available for our students 16 years and older, the governor had offered the opportunity for schools to host those working with providers…” Superintendent Heidi Kegley said. “We have had an excellent partnership with our Delaware Public Health District…they were our partner in setting up that clinic.”
According to Kegley, approximately 200 students in total attended the clinics, which were held on separate days for Cohort A and B.
“I know some students had already received those vaccinations through their workplace providers…” Kegley said. “So it was a great opportunity for those who were interested in having that chance to receive the vaccination.”
Students at the clinic received the Pfizer vaccine, which is currently the only vaccine approved for people under 18. It involves two doses spaced three weeks apart. Not only did the clinic make the vaccine accessible to any age-eligible student who wanted it, but it also ensured students were scheduled for a second dose
“I think that it’s great that so many students at Hayes are fully vaccinated,” junior Julia Mayer said. “It gives me hope for a more normal school year next year.”
After getting the vaccine, some students said they experienced a few side effects.
“My arm hurt and was sore after getting the shot but other than that I felt fine,” junior Sahvanna Macpherson said.
According to the CDC, pain, redness or swelling in the arm after getting vaccinated are common side effects, but it is also common to experience side effects throughout the rest of the body such as tiredness, fever, headaches, nausea, chills or muscle pain, especially after the second dose. However, side effects should go away in a few days.
“Getting the vaccine wasn’t too bad… The side effects I had after each dose were whole body aches and pains that lasted about a day…” Mayer said. “I strongly suggest request off work if you can for the day after each dose.”
Although the vaccine can cause some temporary discomfort, students appreciate the benefit of having protection against Covid-19.
“I want to be able to travel places during the summer and having the vaccine makes me feel extra safe,” Macpherson said.
As of May 13, data from the CDC shows that 46% of the U.S. population has received at least one dose of the vaccine while about 35% of the total population in the U.S. is fully vaccinated.
While a similar percentage of Ohioans have been fully vaccinated, Delaware County is ahead of all other Ohio counties with roughly 48% of its total population having completed vaccination.
Within Ohio and the rest of the country as well, many older adults have been vaccinated while fewer young adults have yet to receive their vaccine. In Delaware County, over 90% of people ages 70-79 have at least started their vaccine, but less than 60% of people ages 20-29 have done the same, according to the Ohio Department of Health.
With Covid-19 cases more prevalent amongst younger people, vaccination is becoming increasingly more important.
However, some students feel vaccination is a more personal decision and that individuals should consider what works best for them and consult their doctor about any concerns.
“Just do what you feel comfortable with and just remember that you are helping others by getting it,” Macpherson said.
It’s unclear what trajectory Covid-19 will follow in the coming months. However, students like Mayer and Macpherson said they are looking forward to normal-sized gatherings with family and friends as well as being able to travel outside of the U.S. once restrictions are lifted.
According to Kegley, DCS also has many things to look forward to for both the end of this year and the next school year.
“We’re looking forward to…celebrating the accomplishments of our seniors as they’re graduating,” Kegley said. “Then we will be working with our local health department and our building level administrators as we make plans to welcome everyone back in August the next school year.”