ATLANTA - Pamela Lesane says the last week has been rough on her, tending to a house full of family members sick with the novel coronavirus.
"You've got 3 or 4 people in the house," Lesane says. "You've got to separate them, separate yourself. It's, just, mentally, you've just got to keep it going mentally."
The Lithonia, Georgia patient services coordinator for Emory Healthcare says her family has been careful about COVID-19.
But in early January, Lesane says, about 10 family members got together for her twin grandsons' birthday party.
That, she says, may be where this virus got a foothold into their lives.
Because of Lesane's job checking in ambulatory surgery patients at Emory facilities, she qualified as one of the first Georgians to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
She received her second shot in early January.
By mid-January, she says, her husband William Lesane began to feel ill.
"My husband came home from work, and he was in a lot of pain," she says. "They'd sent him home from work because he started having body aches."
Pamela Lesane , who works at Emory Healthcare in Atlanta, has received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.
By then, Lesane says, two of their adult daughters had developed headaches.
So, William Lesane decided to get tested for COVID-19.
"His test came back positive," Pamela Lesane says.
Both of her daughters’ test results did, too, she says.
"It was like, wow," Lesane says. "We never would have thought it would happen to us! My husband? Our family? The bad news kept coming.
Her granddaughter, who had just left for college, lost her sense of taste and smell.
She, too, Lesane says, tested positive.
Then, her twin grandsons also tested positive, she says.
"They’re four-years-old," Lesane says. "One of them has an underlying heart condition."
Pamela Lesane says she was the only one of 7 family members who tested negative for the virus.
So, just to be sure, she says, she got tested a second time.
"It came back negative again," she says. "I said, 'It couldn't be nothing but that vaccine, that vaccine saved me! It saved me!"
But, there is a reason why health officials want people to continue to wear a mask and social distance even after they have been vaccinated.
While studies show the vaccines are about 95% effective in keeping people from developing symptoms of COVID-19, no one knows whether vaccine recipients, who get infected but never develop symptoms can still transmit the virus to others.
"That was my thought: was I the carrier," Lesane says. "Because it's so strange, everybody got it except for me."
Pamela Lesane says there is a lesson in her family's story.
"I urged everyone, just go get tested," Lesane says. "Go get tested and take that vaccine. Get that vaccine."
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