IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike Receives COVID-19 Vaccination

Director urges people to be vaccinated when they are eligible

SPRINGFIELD – Today, Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike received her coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination at the Cook County Health’s North Riverside Health Center in Riverside.  Partnering with the Cook County Department of Public Health and Cook County Health, Dr. Ezike received her first dose of the Pfizer vaccine.

“I waited to let my physician colleagues and other health care personnel receive the vaccine first because they have a higher risk than me of being exposed to COVID-19,” said Dr. Ezike.  “But I want to show people, and not just tell them, that I trust this vaccine and I want them to have confidence in the vaccine so they will get vaccinated when they are eligible. 

“I am taking this vaccine for my husband who gave me the scare of my life when he collapsed at the dinner table in front of me and our children in May.  After being rushed to the hospital and learning of his diagnosis, it became intensely personal to never forget that this virus preys on people with pre-existing medical conditions.  I am getting vaccinated for my children who have struggled like many of us.

“We’ve seen people suffer with anxiety and depression.  We’ve also seen grades fall as students struggle with home learning and the missing connection with friends and teachers.  Being vaccinated gets us one step closer to children being educated in school without fears of contracting this virus.  Vaccination gets us closer to the safe playing of sports and it gets us closer to be able to share love with warm embraces and not just air hugs.”

We want to encourage people to share photos of when they get vaccinated on social media and use the hash tag #VaxUpIL.  The more people who see others getting vaccinated, the more people will choose to get vaccinated.  More information about COVID-19 vaccine and vaccination can be found on the IDPH website at