Here at Merck Canada, we are proud of our colleagues who continue to drive our mission forward through countless hours, both on and off the job. There are many examples, including Andrea Konopka. Andrea is an Oncology Therapeutic Specialist, who is also a registered nurse and has been helping to vaccinate Canadians in her community of London, ON against COVID-19. Keep reading to learn more about what motivates Andrea to contribute in this way.
Q: What does it mean to you to be able to give back to your community?
Andrea: We all need to do our part to protect our friends, family, healthcare providers, the immunocompromised, and everyone that we are around. Personally, for me, vaccination is a choice I made to protect myself and others. I see everyone as a patient that I need to help protect. I am thankful that I can help and thankful for the community that comes out to get vaccinated. I always thank my patients for coming to the clinics regardless of whether it is their first, second, or booster shot. I am thankful that, while they are sitting in my chair, I can help answer their questions and concerns or dispel any misinformation they might have.
Q: What has been the most rewarding moment or experience for you since you’ve been vaccinating others against COVID?
Andrea: Honestly, I come home from the clinics happy and exhausted. 99% of my days have been very rewarding. Sometimes, it can be stressful to look out at the sea of people waiting to be vaccinated, but I’d rather that than have no one show up. Just last week I had the son of an elderly patient thank me for having such a great attitude and making the experience pleasant. I love it when I hand them their “waiting time” sticker and they haven’t even noticed that I’ve already injected them! I pride myself on my ability to distract and administer a painless injection!
Q: What does it mean to you to have an employer who supports you in this way?
Andrea: Having Merck support my choice to help fight this pandemic is very meaningful. I am so grateful to work for an employer that recognizes the importance of these clinics and the importance of giving back to my community.