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See the latest news and updates about COVID-19 and its impact on the Charlotte region, the Carolinas and beyond.

Cooper Receives First Dose Of COVID-19 Vaccine, Joining 20 Other Governors Nationwide

Robert Willett
Gov. Roy Cooper / Twitter
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper receives the COVID-19 vaccine from Carolyn Knaup, RN, at WakeMed on Wednesday. Cooper received the Pfizer vaccine.

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper on Wednesday afternoon received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

“I’m proud to have received my first shot today and grateful for the health care workers who helped make it happen,” Cooper tweeted.

Cooper received the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine, which requires both a first and second shot, at WakeMed Raleigh Campus.

Cooper was eligible on Wednesday under Group 3 of North Carolina’s five-group vaccine plan. Group 3 contains frontline essential workers like grocery store workers and first responders but the essential workers category also includes those who work in “essential government and community services” like postal workers, court employees, elected officials and clergy.

These workers became eligible for vaccine appointments Wednesday, according to an announcement Cooper made Tuesday.

At least 20 other governors have already received their COVID-19 vaccines, according to a WFAE analysis, including Gov. Andy Beshear of Kentucky, Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland, Gov. Tate Reeves of Mississippi and Gov. Kay Ivey of Alabama.

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster has not received the vaccine. He and first lady Peggy McMaster tested positive for COVID-19 in December. Brian Symmes, a spokesman for McMaster's office, said in an email on Wednesday that McMaster received antibody treatment when he tested positive and is "not supposed to get the vaccine until 90 days after receiving that treatment."

South Carolina will open up vaccine appointments beginning Monday next week for anyone 55 and up, people with high-risk medical conditions and frontline workers like police officers and grocery store employees.

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Claire Donnelly is WFAE's health reporter. She previously worked at NPR member station KGOU in Oklahoma and also interned at WBEZ in Chicago and WAMU in Washington, D.C. She holds a master's degree in journalism from Northwestern University and attended college at the University of Virginia, where she majored in Comparative Literature and Spanish. Claire is originally from Richmond, Virginia. Reach her at cdonnelly@wfae.org or on Twitter @donnellyclairee.