Doctor with First Nations Health Authority in B.C. test positive for COVID-19 after receiving vaccine

Physician says it’s a good lesson for people to be safe even after getting a shot.


Dr. Shannon McDonald says it started with a sniffle and the progressed from there.

“He started sniffling and that’s not like him and a little bit of a cough and he works in healthcare too so I said well you can’t go to work coughing you need to go get tested because that’s what you would tell your staff to do so you have to do that too,” says McDonald, acting chief medical health officer for the First Nations Health Authority in B.C. about her husband.

“So he was tested on the Monday morning the 22nd and it came back positive, yikes! Because we have been so careful.”

McDonald is also the face on television advising the public to be safe during the pandemic.

She says both she and her husband have been strictly following all the recommended safety rules and on March 8 they were both vaccinated.

However two weeks after is when her husband began not to feel well.

To be cautious McDonald was also tested for COVID-19.

“So the next day I was tested. My first test came back negative but over the next few days I became increasingly symptomatic going through boxes of Kleenex, headache, fatigue, and so by Friday the 27th I went back and was re-tested and it tested positive,” she says.

Dr. Ray Chaboyer is a Cree physician originally from the York Factory First Nation in Manitoba.

He says it just goes to show you that if someone like McDonald – a well known figure head for the First Nations Health Authority can get the virus – anyone can get it even after getting the vaccination.

“It is definitely important that people are aware that they do not stop their protocols for protecting themselves from the infection – vaccines are all about probabilities not certainties so you are less likely to have serious infection you are less likely to be hospitalized or to die from covid infection once you have been immunized but it does not 100% protect you from getting infected,” says Chaboyer.

McDonald believes it was because both her and her husband were immunized two weeks prior is why their cases were mild – but claims it’s still a mystery how they got infected.

Chaboyer is urging everyone to get vaccinated so the general population can develop a degree of  immunity to COVID-19.

“It only works if everyone is vaccinated.”

Video Journalist / Vancouver

A proud Métis from BC, Tina began her television career in 1997 as a talent agent for film and TV. She joined APTN National News in 2007 as a Video Journalist in the Vancouver bureau. In 2010, she was the recipient of the Amnesty International Human Rights Journalism Award for her story on murdered and missing women and girls.