The CDC's immunization advisory panel voted Tuesday to first give the COVID-19 vaccine to health care personnel and long-term care facility residents. Some firefighters feel they should have been included in that list.
“I think it’s not the correct decision," Prince George's County firefighter and paramedic Theresa Alexander said. "I strongly believe for firefighters, paramedics and EMTs, we should be given top priority along with hospital workers and health care workers...because for many patients, we’re the first link throughout the pandemic. Our personnel are the ones treating them prior to being transported, and that includes things like breathing treatments, airway procedures, which certainly increases our risk." As it stands, firefighters are listed in the second group to receive the vaccine, along with other essential workers, like those in the education and food sectors, correctional officers, and police officers, according to the advisory group's presentation.