Essential Workers #GetVaccinated

This series shares DC 37 members’ personal stories and their reasons for receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

In the fight to end a global pandemic, DC 37 is proud of the work, sacrifice, and dedication of its members in these unprecedented and challenging times.

Photo: NYC H+H

William Kelly 

Housekeeping Services

Local 420

“I’m the first person at Health+Hospitals to step up for the COVID vaccine. I got my first dose of Pfizer vaccine on Jan. 5. Both doses were like getting the flu shot. I had no symptoms. 

I keep the hospital clean, I change beds, clean the nurses’ stations, dust the floors. I keep the COVID unit clean. I work around patients with COVID, so I decided to get the shot. When coronavirus hit New York City last year, the first five months of the pandemic were hectic at Elmhurst Hospital. I’ve worked there for 23 years and I have never experienced anything like this. So many people were sick and dying. It was very hard, it was scary, I was scared. Seeing so many people die was really tough. 

I had to figure out how I am going to get through this, be safe, and help others.

I tested for COVID and my tests were negative. I’m the first to tell any of my coworkers that we are all exposed and at risk to catch this virus. Let’s all stick together. Let’s all get the vaccine. We have to fight our way through this pandemic. We have to stay up for the fight and see it all the way through. Get your shot.”

As told to DIANE S. WILLIAMS

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