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‘I Feel Relieved’: What People Are Saying And Doing After They Get Their COVID Vaccine

CHICAGO (CBS) — For the very first time today, hundreds of people in Des Plaines received the Johnson & Johnson one-dose vaccine.

CBS 2 Investigator Megan Hickey reports many patients are looking forward to “life after vaccine.” CBS 2 spoke to patients on Friday who walked out after just a few minutes now fully vaccinated.

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But what does that really mean for their day-to-day? The answer still isn’t very clear.

Diane Campbell is in the 65-plus group.

“We had cell phones, laptops,” Campbell said. “Refresh, refresh, refresh.”

Carisa Mitchell works in healthcare.

“I kept trying and trying and trying,” Mitchell said. And I finally got in.”

They’re the latest recipients of the one dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine at the first large-scale J&J vaccination site in Illinois.

“I used to work for Johnson and Johnson years ago, so I feel like I trust this,” said Campbell.

Both said they feel a weight lifted off of their shoulders.

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“I feel relieved, definitely,” Mitchell said. “I can go into work, I can have patients into my office and not have to worry so much.”

But how does life really change for someone who’s fully vaccinated? Can fully vaccinated people gather in small groups?

So far the CDC hasn’t released its guidelines.

“We are making sure and taking the time to get this right and we will be releasing this guidance soon,” said Doctor Rochelle Walensky, Director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC.)

“Yeah, I don’t think we know the answer to all of these questions yet,” added Doctor Kelly Michelson, Director of Northwestern University’s Center for Bioethics

Michelson of Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine said the CDC has said fully vaccinated people don’t need to quarantine in certain cases:

“After being exposed in a close contact with someone who has COVID, if you’ve been vaccinated in the last three months,” Michelson said. “So those are the things that we know right now, but we’re hoping to hear a little bit more guidance from the CDC coming soon.”

Meanwhile these patients are content just thinking about the things they’re going to be able to do.

“So if I do go to a restaurant, and I do get to eat in public again, I’ll be able to take my mask off and feel a little secure,” Campbell said.

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On Friday, the Des Plaines site booked 800 appointments. Cook County officials expect to provide as many as 3,500 vaccines per day when the Des Plaines site is fully up and running and when adequate vaccine is available.

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