Health care workers at Northern Arizona Healthcare began taking the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine Tuesday. Hospital staff at both Verde Valley and Flagstaff medical centers started the vaccination process after both facilities received 14-hundred doses of the vaccine total, which will be distributed to first line responders and hospital staff over the next week. The very first person vaccinated at FMC was critical care nurse Stacy Payne. She was happy to get the vaccine saying “I’m so excited. I feel like this is our whole planet coming together to give us hope to get out of this.” She adds, “I just really hope this turns things around for us and I’m excited for the rest of our staff to get this vaccine.” Verde Valley Medical Center’s ICU Dr. Doug Mapel got the vaccine Tuesday and says he believes the vaccine has been “well tested.” He says, “I’ve participated in a number of vaccine studies before and comparison with other things already on the market, the efficacy of this is excellent.” Dr. Mapel adds, “the sooner we get everybody on board and vaccinated, the faster we can get past this and get back to normal life.” Even with the beginning of vaccines, health officials still say to practice mask wearing, social distancing and hand washing standards.