‘I feel normal. No side effects at all.’ Local lab technician shares experience taking Pfizer vaccine

HOUSTON – Texas received more than 225,000 vials of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

Gov. Greg Abbott said Thursday that he expects the state to administer more than one million shots by the end of the month. The priority goes to healthcare professionals.

As of Thursday, more than 10,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine have been distributed in the Houston area. Quoc Nguyen, a lab technician at Houston Methodist, was one of the healthcare workers who received the vaccine.

Nguyen said he relieved to receive the vaccine. He said his experience taking the vaccine was just like taking a flu shot.

“I got mine [Wednesday], and we’re supposed to schedule another booster shot in three weeks,” Nguyen said.

As a lab technician, his job at the hospital requires examining COVID-19 test samples.

“I’m happy we got this vaccine so quickly,” Nguyen said.

At Methodist, more than 2,200 doses have been administered so far.

“It’s a pretty good experience. It’s just like getting the flu shot,” Nguyen said.

While not all healthcare workers are choosing to get the vaccine, Nguyen had no hesitations.

“We have to trust the science, the medical professionals that are delivering these vaccines,” Nguyen said.

Right after getting the first dose, he said it was relatively painless.

“Just a little sore. It’s the same as getting the flu vaccine,” Nguyen said.

Overnight he said the soreness was gone.

“It’s safe. I feel normal...no side effects at all,” Nguyen said.

Next week, Texas is expected to receive more vaccines. Moderna’s vaccines await final emergency-use authorization. Nguyen said the vaccine will ultimately help healthcare workers stay healthy so that they can continue to fight the pandemic.

“Without the lab technicians working behind the scenes, you wouldn’t get your results,” Nguyen.