CBS4's Hank Tester reports the nationwide study not only focused on the effectiveness of the vaccines, but on the how long the vaccines last.
LAUREN PASTRANA: Right now getting back to the coronavirus pandemic. The University of Miami has just wrapped up an effectiveness study of two COVID-19 vaccines. The two vaccines are currently being provided to South Floridians.
ELIOTT RODRIGUEZ: CBS 4's Hank Tester reports not only did they test the effectiveness, they are also monitoring how long those vaccines will last.
HANK TESTER: On the front lines in the COVID fight, Dr. Alberto Caban-Martinez here participating in a vaccination event in the city of Hialeah. But involved in much more, including a study on the effectiveness of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Testing continues, will for some time. The subject of the U of M study, part of a nationwide study for a thousand first responders, part of what's called the Recover Study. Dr. Natasha Schaefer Solle worked with Dr. Caban-Martinez on the project.
NATASHA SCHAEFER SOLLE: We are also still offering free testing, COVID testing, for these specific groups, even after they received their vaccine, again to test their effectiveness, and just for a longer period of time.
HANK TESTER: Which has always been a question with about how long these shots are effective and how about those results?
NATASHA SCHAEFER SOLLE: Two weeks after receiving your first dose your risk of infection was reduced by 80%. And then we saw that once you are fully vaccinated, so two weeks after your second dose, your risk for infection was actually decreased by 90%.
HANK TESTER: Which leaves a 10% factor. That means if you are vaccinated you still need to mask up, social distance, wash hands. The study also considers the factors beyond vaccine like first responders use of personal protection equipment.
NATASHA SCHAEFER SOLLE: They all received the vaccine. And then over 13 weeks we followed them, giving them weekly nasal swab PCR tests. And so we saw the effectiveness.
HANK TESTER: The two researchers collaborated on the study with other researchers at the University of Miami.
NATASHA SCHAEFER SOLLE: To see a study like this, to show how effective they are, is really great news for everyone in terms of how we can really take over this pandemic and make a big change.
HANK TESTER: The UM researchers say that for you the general public, that you need to get that vaccine, whenever it's available. And whichever vaccine it is doesn't matter.
I'm Hank Tester, CBS 4 News.