Medical doctor Michelle Chester, born in the South American CARICOM nation of Guyana, is preparing to administer the COVID-19 vaccine on December 14, 2020 at the Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New Hyde Park on Long Island, New York. The first vaccination was given to nurse Sandra Lindsay, with Governor Andrew Cuomo participating in the event remotely via video conference. (Photo by Scott Heins / Getty Images)
One NAN first
By News Americas Staff Writer
News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Tue December 15, 2020: It was definitely an all-Caribbean-American affair when it came to the U.S.’s first COVID-19 vaccine, administered on Monday, December 14, 2020.
Not only were the first two health care workers shot dead by the Caribbean Americans, but the doctor who administered the shot was also from a CARICOM country.
Dr. Michelle Chester, Corporate Director Employee Health Services at Northwell Health, was born in the capital of the South American CARICOM nation Guyana, News Americas has learned. After migrating to the US, she attended Far Rockaway High School and then Rutgers University.
“We should all give this vaccine a chance to drift into the new beginning of ending Covid-19,” said Dr. Chester after administering the first vaccine against Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 at the Long Island Jewish Medical Center in Queens. New York on Monday to Jamaica-born Sandra Lindsay, an intensive care nurse, and Haitian-American doctor Yves Duroseau, the Chair of Emergency Medicine at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan.
“She got a good grade and it didn’t feel any different than taking any other vaccine,” Lindsay said immediately after taking the vaccine from Dr. Chester had received.
Jamaica-born nurse Lindsay became one of the most famous nurses in the United States after becoming the first person in the country to be vaccinated against the coronavirus.
The 52-year-old immigrated to the United States 30 years ago and attended Community College and then Lehman College in the Bronx for a degree in nursing.
She went to work at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan and rose through the ranks until she became director of intensive care at Long Island Jewish Medical Center, part of the Northwell Health network, in 2016.
Another Caribbean American of Haitian roots, Dr. Yves Duroseau, the Emergency Medicine Chair at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan.
As a frontline emergency medical practitioner, he is at high risk and said he wanted the staff of doctors, nurses and other health care workers he oversees to follow suit.
Dr. Duroseau said he was also keen to send a message to blacks in particular that vaccination was safe.
“I think we have to fear the Covid-19 virus more than the vaccine,” said Dr. Duroseau.
With 23 hospitals, nearly 800 outpatient facilities, and more than 14,200 affiliated physicians, Northwell Health is the largest healthcare provider and private employer in New York State. They serve more than two million people annually in the New York area and beyond, and employ 74,000 people – 18,500 nurses and 4,500 salaried doctors, including members of Northwell Health Physician Partners.