Rock Hill teacher, heart transplant recipient, waits for FDA approval of vaccine boosters

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ROCK HILL, S.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – A Rock Hill teacher, who is a heart transplant recipient, is waiting for the FDA to approve COVID-19 vaccine boosters for people with compromised immune systems.

The FDA could soon authorize COVID booster shots for certain people with compromised immune systems.

The CDC director said Thursday only a very small group would be eligible, less than 3% of adults, including organ transplant recipients and some cancer patients.

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“It was scary at the time when I was first getting my transplant but it was a blessing in disguise,” said Courtney Waring.

Waring’s heart was failing. She was just 29-years-old when a donor saved her life.

“My transplant means to me a second chance at life, just to do all of the things that I wouldn’t be able to do without having a transplant, and protecting it is my number one priority,” said Waring.

Waring, a teacher at the Rock Hill Virtual Academy, survived childhood cancer.

As a heart transplant recipient, she’s at risk for severe complications if she catches COVID.


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“I’ve been in a situation where I have been intubated, I have been on life support after my transplant, up to seven days after my transplant, I know how that feels. I don’t want to put myself back in that predicament, if there’s something there that can protect me, I am all for it,” said Waring.

She didn’t waste any time getting her COVID shots.

She got two doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine and was fully vaccinated by the end of March, but now she and other organ transplant recipients may need a booster shot.


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“This action is about ensuring our most vulnerable who may need an additional dose to enhance their biological responses to the vaccines are better protected against COVID-19,” said CDC Director Rochelle Walensky.

Waring says she’s willing to do what it takes to protect her gift of life.

“It’s been a blessing. My life is so much better because of it, so I am so grateful for my donor.”

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