First COVID-19 vaccine recipient in Cincinnati recalls clinical trial process

First COVID-19 vaccine recipient in Cincinnati recalls clinical trial process

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - After months of orders, curfews, and cases, Ohio is only a few weeks away from the expected date for its first rounds of COVID-19 vaccines. But without the help from Jarelle Marshall and countless others, the vaccine could have come much later.

Marshall wanted to do something to help people. So, back in August, he participated in a clinical trial and became the first person in Cincinnati to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

He got the idea to participate in the trial after some of his friends asked if he would get a vaccine.

“I was like, ‘I have no clue, can you send me some information,’” Marshall recalls. “So, I called a buddy of mine, who is a doctor, and he advised me ‘hey, I know you’re pretty healthy and you’re low risk. African Americans are disproportionately affected, I think it will be a good idea for you to do it.’”

Unsure what the Moderna vaccine would do to him, Marshall says he was nervous going into the process.

“I was super nervous because I had never even gotten a flu shot before,” Marshall says. “So, I just didn’t know what to expect.”

Preparing for the vaccine was nerve-racking, he explained.

“So, they bring you in, they have probably a 30-page document, a lady read every page of it to me, asked me if I had questions, stopped, just made sure I felt comfortable being able to opt-out, what my options were,” Marshall says.

He got the first dose of the Moderna vaccine in his right arm at the end of August. Four weeks later he received the second round of the vaccine.

In the days following the vaccines, Marshall said it was scary. He had a few days with his temperature near 100 degrees.

“It made me nervous because every time you take an IV injection, they ask you to document every day what’s your temperature,” Marshall explains. “So, I had a couple degree high 99 temperature which gave me a little scare. So. I just took my temperature every hour until it came back down.”

Ever since though, Marshall said he has felt fine and is COVID-19 free.

“I think the biggest thing for me is that I just want people to talk to people who have gotten it or have the ability to talk to someone who’s gotten the trial to see what their experience was like because in the past there have been instances, especially in the African American community where there has been some distrust,” Marshall said.

Marshall received a Humanitarian Award from the University of Cincinnati for volunteering to go through the vaccine trial.

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