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My Why: I Did It for My Family

“It was all so new and there was so much information swirling around about the different vaccines. Family members and coworkers were all talking about their reasons for getting it and for not getting it,” says Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital’s Perioperative Operations Manager and Preference Card Coordinator Elizabeth Torres of her initial hesitation about receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

Torres has a 16-year-old daughter at home who will need to be vaccinated come fall in order to attend school. “My daughter said, ‘I won’t do it unless you do it,’” says Torres.

That’s when Torres started to do her research, gathering the information she would need to make an informed decision about her health and the health of her family. “Friends were inviting me out and I was embarrassed to say I couldn’t go because I wasn’t vaccinated. Then I started to see emails come out at work about the percentage of employees who had gotten it. That was impactful. So many people were receiving it, so it must work and it must be safe,” she says.

Any remaining doubt was erased when her nephew was diagnosed with cancer.

“When he gets sick, I’m the one he calls to make him soup and other things,” she says. “When I came over with his first meal after his diagnosis, I realized I couldn’t go upstairs to see him. I had to see him from the porch. That really hit home. I knew then that I had to do it.”

Torres easily arranged her vaccine through Occupation Health and had both her shots with no side effects. “I’m very happy that I did it,” she says. “My only regret is that I didn’t do it sooner.”

Now her entire family is vaccinated and looking forward to actually gathering in person. Torres turns 60 this month and hopes to be able to celebrate in-person with her family whom she hasn’t seen in over a year.

If you’re an employee interested in scheduling your COVID-19 vaccination, please contact the COVID Call Center at 781-960-1567 for an appointment.

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