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San Diego COVID-19 vaccine trial participant speaks out about experience

Posted at 7:19 AM, Dec 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-05 10:19:51-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- A San Diego woman who participated in a local coronavirus vaccine trial is sharing her experience.

Although it’s a blind study, she says she’s convinced she received the vaccine and she hopes her story will encourage others to get vaccinated.

During the summer, American biotech company Moderna began some of its phase three trials in San Diego. Leslie Sullivan was one of those patients.

“I put my name in the hat and by the end of July I was in getting my first dose,” she told 10News.

The vaccine is given in two doses. “It felt like a flu shot and not much in the way of reaction after the first one,” Sullivan added.

She says the second time she received the shot, she felt something. “By midnight I spiked a fever, I had chills, it was exactly like how the flu feels.”

A day later, Sullivan was back to normal.

Sullivan doesn’t know whether or not she got the vaccine, but says based on the symptoms she experienced, she’s almost positive she didn’t get a placebo. She says some people she’s spoken with mistakenly believe that if she got the actual vaccine, she had COVID-19.

“The vaccine does not give you COVID this particular one has no live virus in it at all.”

Both the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines use MRNA technology, which relies on messenger RNA to essentially trick the body into making antibodies to fight the virus.

At some point Sullivan will find out if she did indeed get the vaccine When a vaccine is made available to the public, those who received a placebo will be notified so they can get vaccinated.