Today Show Anchors Get the COVID-19 Vaccine on Air: 'What a Privilege,' Says Savannah Guthrie
Savannah Guthrie, Craig Melvin, Sheinelle Jones, Dylan Dreyer and Jenna Bush Hager all received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine Wednesday at N.Y.C.'s Rockefeller Plaza, which was broadcast live on the show.
"The vaccine rollout is in full force — nearly 170 million doses given here in the U.S. so far," said Kotb, 56, who was joined by Roker, 66, to host the segment. "And we're about to add five more people to the count right now."
The camera then panned to her colleagues getting prepped for their shots, since they now all qualify for the vaccine (anyone over the age of 16 in New York state can get it).
Roker received his first dose of the vaccine back in January live on the Today show and his second shot "a few weeks later," meaning he is fully vaccinated, while Kotb said she got her vaccine at a Walgreens location.
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After receiving his shot, Melvin, 41, said he was feeling "amazing" — and while he's "not a man of great emotion," he was very "close to crying."
"I'm so thankful for the science and the scientists, but I think we should also remember some 560-plus thousand people in this country that we've lost in the last year to this dreadful virus," he added somberly.
Bush Hager, 39, said she was feeling "hopeful" after receiving her vaccine, and thanked the woman who administered her shot "for everything you do every day."
In a celebratory Instagram post, Guthrie, 49, wrote in part, "What a day, what a privilege — so grateful to receive the vaccine! Hoping this helps spread awareness and encourages others to do the same, so we can get back to life as we love it!"
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Roker, who got the vaccine two months after undergoing surgery for prostate cancer, previously told PEOPLE he was getting vaccinated "to make sure I stay healthy, because I want to make sure I protect my family and my friends and my coworkers."
"Because we're all in this together," he added. "If we don't take care of each other, there's no point in going on. And once I get vaccinated, I am still wearing a mask. Are you?"
"This is who I'm getting vaccinated for when it's my turn: First, for my mother, who's in her 80s; for my fiancé, Joel [Schiffman]; for my two children [Hope Catherine, 2 this month, and Haley Joy, 4]," Kotb told PEOPLE. "And for every single person who I pass by, who I walk by and who I see."
"So I am getting vaccinated not only for my family, but for yours too," she said.
For more information about determining vaccine eligibility and locations with available appointments in your area, you can check out NBC News' "Plan Your Vaccine" tool at nbcnews.com/specials/plan-your-vaccine/.
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