The first dose of the Moderna coronavirus vaccine was injected into the arm of a Stutsman County frontline worker at about 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 22.
It marked the first of about 300 doses Central Valley Health District has received and will dispense to health care workers and first responders in the county over the next two weeks, according to Robin Iszler, unit administrator for the health district.
Recipients receiving the vaccine now will need a second dose of the vaccine in about four weeks.
"I'm glad we're here," said Chad Kaiser, Stutsman County sheriff, who was among those vaccinated Tuesday. "This will help us start getting back to normal."
The sheriff's office anticipated getting 14 officers and staff members vaccinated Tuesday and Wednesday.
The Jamestown Police Department planned to have some officers vaccinated this week and the remainder next week to limit the number of officers out if they have a reaction, according to Scott Edinger, chief of the department.
"The officers vaccinated Wednesday are coming up on two days off," he said, referring to the timing of any possible reactions. "Any problems could happen in that time."
Along with staff from the Jamestown Police Department and Stutsman County Sheriff's Office, employees of Jamestown Area Ambulance and some local medical providers were vaccinated in the first wave on Tuesday.
After receiving the vaccine, people are asked to wait 15 minutes before leaving the area to see if there are any immediate reactions to the vaccine. Iszler said that people who have a past history of allergic reactions to vaccines are asked to check with their physician and make the staff at the vaccine clinic aware before the vaccine is administered.
Iszler noted the process is just beginning. The 300 doses received by Central Valley Health District this week will be followed by another 50 doses next week. Larger shipments are expected in the future, although there is no estimate as to when vaccinations for the general public will begin.
Altogether, Stutsman County needs 15,000 doses or more to reach levels of "herd immunity" when at least 70% of the public is immune to the coronavirus, she said.
Future mass vaccination events are planned at the Jamestown Civic Center.
"People need to watch the media," Iszler said. "As soon as we get enough doses, we'll announce who we will vaccinate at that time."
The mass events are designed to vaccinate about one person every 10 minutes with people moving through multiple lanes in the Civic Center main arena. Vaccine doses may also be distributed through clinics and pharmacies in the area.
"We vaccinated 800 people in four hours back in H1N1," Iszler said, referring to a mass vaccination clinic held then at the Central Valley Health District office.
The H1N1 pandemic occurred in 2009.