US President Donald Trump on Monday said that the first coronavirus vaccine was administered in the country. Taking to Twitter, Trump said: "First vaccine administered. Congratulations USA! Congratulations WORLD!"
Critical care nurse Sandra Lindsay at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in Queens got the first shot to vaccinate front line health care workers. The head of the hospital system, Michael Dowling, stood over Lindsay as a doctor, Michelle Chester, administered the dose.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had on Friday issued emergency use authorisation (EAU) to the vaccine developed by American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech to combat the disease that has killed over 294,000 people in the country.
“Today our nation has achieved a medical miracle. We have delivered a safe and effective medicine in just nine months. This is one of the greatest scientific accomplishments in history. It will save millions of lives and soon end the pandemic once and for all. I am thrilled to report that the FDA has authorised the Pfizer vaccine,” Trump had said in a video soon after the FDA approval.
According to the FDA, the vaccine contains messenger RNA (mRNA), which is genetic material. The vaccine contains a small piece of the SARS-CoV-2 virus’s mRNA that instructs cells in the body to make the virus’s distinctive “spike” protein. When a person receives this vaccine, their body produces copies of the spike protein, which does not cause disease, but triggers the immune system to learn to react defensively, producing an immune response against SARS-CoV-2, the drug controller said.