"This is a very hopeful day ..." Dr. Yves Duroseau told "The Daily Briefing". "I was very honored and happy to be able to have this opportunity to role model the importance of this vaccination and how important it is going to be for us moving forward to get out of this tragic situation that we're in."
Dr. Duroseau, the chair of emergency medicine at New York City's Lenox Hill Hospital, received the vaccine alongside critical care nurse Sara Lindsay at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in Queens Monday morning.
Millions of doses of the vaccine began to be shipped across the U.S. over the weekend after the Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency use authorization for the Pfizer vaccine candidate Friday evening. Emergency use authorization for a second vaccine candidate, from Massachusetts-based Moderna, is expected later this month.
"Everyone is excited," Dr. Duroseau told host Dana Perino. "Everyone is really excited. This is the kind of uplifting moment that we all needed. As you know, we're still dealing with a second surge, so to speak, in New York with COVID. So we needed this. We needed the front-line workers to see that there is something at the end of of this struggle and the challenges we're facing now."
Despite the arrival of a vaccine in America's biggest city, indoor dining in New York City was shut down effective Monday due to an increase in cases and hospitalizations. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio also warned Monday of the possibility of "a full shutdown."
Addressing the possibility that patients could refuse to take the vaccine, Dr. Duroseau told Perino: "I think it's important for us to stand behind the science and the research that's been done and to tell our patients absolutely that this is nothing to fear."
"What we should fear is COVID."