As coronavirus vaccine arrives, health experts urge people not to let their guard down

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Nine months after COVID-19 arrived in the Rio Grande Valley, the end of the pandemic is within reach.

Health care workers across the Valley received the first dose of the vaccine during the past few days.

Health experts, though, are warning that people shouldn't let their guard down yet.

"Remember: The vaccine doesn't cure the individual, the vaccine cures the community," said Dr. Ivan Melendez, the Hidalgo County health authority.

Dr. John H. Krouse, the dean of the UTRGV School of Medicine, said everyone needs to keep following guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That means wearing masks, washing hands frequently and avoiding large groups.

Even people who have been vaccinated should avoid gatherings, Krouse said, until the pandemic is over.

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