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Akron Children’s Hospital’s Mike Folino had “no hesitation” when it was time to get his COVID-19 shot.

Stories from the Front Lines: Healthcare foodservice director gets the coronavirus vaccine

Akron Children’s Hospital’s Mike Folino had “no hesitation” when it was time to take his shot.

One of President Biden’s first moves in office has been to try and speed up the pace of coronavirus vaccination, and this week The New York Times reported he was aiming for the U.S. to administer 1.5 million vaccines doses per day. The good news is, we appear to be on track to meet that goal. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the current average is about 1.2 million over the last week.

Of those millions of doses, one went into the arm of Mike Folino, MBA, RDN, LD, director of support services at Akron Children’s Hospital, a pediatric acute-care hospital in Northeast Ohio.

Folino, who’s an active member of the Association for Healthcare Foodservice (AHF), shared his personal vaccination experience with us in terms of what the vaccine felt like, why he decided to go for it, why it’s important and what he’s expecting from his second dose. Here’s his story:

“At Akron Children’s Hospital, we utilized an overflow nursing unit to set up staff vaccine distributions. Once our number was called, so to speak, we would get an email to register a time to get the vaccine.

Upon arrival, we received our instructions and safety warnings and then went into a socially distanced queue. Receiving the vaccine was no different than the annual flu shot. Within a few minutes’ time, I moved onto the post-shot waiting area. Once again, this was a socially distanced area for us all to set 15-minute timers on our phone and wait and see if there were any adverse reactions.

During that time, we had folks from our organization helping us register for our second dose. We also had the option to register with the federal government to report daily aftereffects, if any. I opted in for this, as I thought this would be valuable information.

The next day, my arm was a bit more sore than with the flu shot, but I had no other side effects at all. We have been warned that the second shot is where you see the effects, but my wife (a hospital pharmacist) just got her second dose last week, and reported nothing other than a sore arm.

Getting the vaccine means I'm one piece in the global puzzle that gets us closer to normal.  It means I'm one step closer to having my mom come and visit her granddaughter, one step closer to hugging a friend i haven't seen in a while or shaking hands with a new acquaintance.

My second shot is scheduled for this upcoming weekend. I had no hesitation about getting it and would recommend that others do so when they have the opportunity.”

As told to Tara Fitzpatrick on Jan. 26, 2021.

Contact Tara at [email protected]

Follow her on Twitter @Tara_Fitzie

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