Image courtesy of Perfecto Sobejana


A 71-year-old resident of Narra in southern Palawan, who was on vacation with his family in Orlando Florida, U.S.A., was among the first 1,500 recipients of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine (mRNA-1273) manufactured by ModernaTX, Inc.

Perfecto Sobejana, the vaccine recipient, told Palawan News that he was given his first shot of the vaccine on December 29, 2020, and was “happy” about it.

The vaccine comprises two shots that are administered one month (28 days) apart. Sobejana said the second dose will be given to him after 28 days from the day he was vaccinated on December 29.

“Seniors are one of the priorities here in the U.S. for vaccine and we persevered to line up for vaccination on December 29. Whether you’re a Filipino or an American, they will give you the first dose of the vaccine,” Sobejana said.

Sobejana, who traveled to the U.S.A. in July 2020 from Narra, said he was given mRNA-1273 by the health department of Florida at the Orange County Convention Center.

He said that before he was given the vaccine, he was first asked short questions such as if he already had exposure to a COVID-19 patient or if any of his family members had contracted the deadly virus.

“[There was an] interview first before getting the vaccine — if you have exposure for a period of 14 days to COVID patients, you have had a previous flu shot, testing for negative, have a cough, fever and you have traveled out of town for the past one month, family members na may sakit or asymptomatic and I said, no naman, “he said.

“After I was given the dose of the vaccine, I was observed for more or less 15 minutes if I had any strange or bad feelings, side effects, or any reaction. But after 15 minutes there was nothing until I was allowed to leave,” Sobejana added.

Sobejana said he was also asked to read and sign a waiver that means he was allowing himself to receive the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.

He also said that his wife, who is also in Florida, had also been vaccinated by anti-COVID vaccine from Pfizer.

“So far, I have not felt anything strange about my body and it just seems like a normal flu-vaccine,” he said.

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), it issued on December 18 “an emergency use authorization (EUA) for the second vaccine for the prevention of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)”.

The EUA authorizes the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine to be distributed in the U.S for use in individuals 18 years of age and older.

Its common side effects are reportedly paining on the arm, the injection site; tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, joint pain, swelling of the lymph nodes in the arm, nausea, vomiting, and fever, which can last for several days.

People who have received the vaccine claimed that they experienced the side effects after the management of the second dose.