Senior Medical Services Officer (SMSO) Mary Murphy explains COVID vaccine administration under Operation Collaboration. 
 

During the Fallbrook Village and Bonsall Rotaries joint meeting, SMSO Murphy presented the vaccination process that began December 30th. Operation Collaboration works as a partnership that brings together multiple agencies, alongside San Diego County’s Health and Human Services Agency, to vaccinate those who are most exposed to the virus. Governor Newsom determined the tiers, and each county decides how to roll it out to those tiers. 

Vaccination sites, also known as Points of Distribution (PODs), fill up very quickly. When the Borrego Spring POD first opened, 806 people received their shots. San Marcos opened recently, and Carlsbad has hours three days a week from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.  Julian has become available recently. There are several ways to get immunizations: the County, private insurance, pharmacies like CVS, or at nursing homes for the aged. Mostly, Operation Collaboration fills in the gaps until retail pharmacies have the COVID vaccine. Patients sign up to new PODs very swiftly as if it was a Def Leppard concert. SMSO Murphy couldn’t even get her own parents’ signed on for an appointment for three weeks.  If there are “no-shows,” awaiting teachers and fire department personnel receive their vaccines. 

Nothing about the COVID immunization alters your DNA/RNA or causes sterility.  Avoid listening to scare mongers. No one has experienced DNA/RNA changes. SMSO Murphy had a vaccine and stated her DNA/RNA is perfect. She is still Irish and speaks with an accent. Genetic materials allow the body to recognize the virus and conquer it. Imagine a saloon where there was a bar fight. The “Wanted” poster allows the posse to recognize and track down bad guys. Your body receives a weakened COVID so the body recognizes it and beats it. All vaccines contain the same RNA genetic material with a spike protein. All the current variants have the same spike protein, so the vaccines will protect you. 

 

For now, you will require two shots whether you use Moderna or Pfizer vaccines. While these vaccines last six days under refrigeration, they do well outside the fridge for six hours. Once you get the first shot, you wait a specific amount of days for the second shot (28 days for Moderna and 21 days for Pfizer.) Moderna allows 72 hours after the 28 day wait. At the County PODs, you get your second appointment after you get your first vaccination. Johnson & Johnson may have a one-shot vaccination in the future, but SMSO Murphy advised Rotarians not to pass up the current two-shot vaccination. 

Throughout the meeting, Rotarians had questions about the N95 masks. There were comments about not using the front-valve ones or KN95 from China. Here is a link to verify authenticity of N95 masks -https://www.cdc.gov/niosh/npptl/usernotices/counterfeitResp.html