America You’ve Been Pranked

The first COVID-19 vaccine in America was not given to a practicing critical care nurse. It went to a hospital administrator. Whaaaat? You thought you saw news coverage of a “frontline” nurse at Long Island Jewish Hospital (full disclosure: I did my residency there) getting vaccinated. Sorry. It was a cleverly orchestrated hoax. 

The made-for-TV moment was streamed into Gov. Cuomo’s press conference and doubled as an informercial for Northwell Health, the Governor’s favorite healthcare system. The New York Times caption calls her an “intensive care nurse.” But really, she is a nurse turned administrator. On her Linked In page, Sandra Lindsay describes herself as a “Dynamic visionary nursing administrator with sharp business insight” who has “undertaken several projects that have had positive impact on profitability.” She has been the Director of Patient Care Services-Critical Care for four years and, before that, a nurse manager. In other words, she is a classic hospital administrator.

If the fawning news media had been observant, they could have seen through this charade. The scrub suit is too clean and perfect. The backdrop is the type rolled out for P.R. events. The healthcare system’s logo is prominently displayed.

Northwell could have told the truth, but “Hospital Administrator gets first COVID vaccine” doesn’t sound as good as “NYC critical care nurse first to receive coronavirus vaccine in U.S.”

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