Questions and Answers: Your Guide to the COVID-19 Vaccine

Did you know that more than eight out of ten Americans said they would take the COVID-19 vaccine in a recent poll?

In the same study, 40% of respondents said they would take the vaccine as soon as it is available, while another 44% would rather wait to get it.

The first COVID-19 vaccines rolled out in December 2020. Since then, we’ve all had many questions about how the vaccine works, who will get it first, are there side effects, and more.

Q: How does the COVID-19 vaccine work?

The COVID-19 vaccine works similarly to many other vaccines you may have had in the past.

Vaccines work to allow our body to create antibodies, and these antibodies fight against the disease.

Initial trials of the COVID-19 vaccine show that it is 94 percent effective against preventing the COVID-19 disease. However, we are still learning how strong and how long this immunity is.

Additionally, many of you may know that there are different variations or mutations of the COVID-19 virus. At this point in time, the COVID-19 vaccine is effective against those different mutations that have been discovered.

Q: Is the COVID Vaccine actually an approved vaccine by the FDA?

The FDA has authorized the emergency use of the COVID-19 vaccine. Here’s what we know:

  • Pfizer and Moderna are two manufacturers of the COVID-19 vaccine,
  • Both vaccines from both companies must be administered in two separate doses
  • Each vaccine had clinical trials with over 44,000 recipients
  • No serious safety concerns arose from any clinical trials

Like most other vaccines, the COVID-19 vaccine has some typical reactions / side-effects, all of which are normal and mild, such as:

  • local site reactions (rashes, bumps, aches)
  • fatigue
  • nausea
  • headache

But this is a good sign, and the COVID-19 vaccine is showing great results.

Q: I’ve already had COVID-19; should I still get the vaccine?

Yes.Due to the severe risks we know are associated with COVID-19, and knowing that there have been cases of re-infection of COVID-19, people who have already contracted COVID-19 are still advised to get the vaccine.

We are still learning about COVID-19, and there will be a lot of facts related to natural immunity — when you’ve had the disease and cannot contract it again — as well as vaccine immunity.

Q: Do I still need to wear a mask after getting the vaccine?

Yes.The COVID-19 vaccine is meant to be one method of preventing the spread of the disease. Having the vaccine does not mean you can’t still be a carrier of the virus.

Vaccines are not silver bullets. And if you receive the vaccine, you should continue to exercise caution and persist in all preventative measures, such as

  • Frequent and thorough handwashing
  • Wearing protective masks when in public
  • Social distancing

Q: Where can I get the vaccine?

The COVID-19 vaccine has been initially distributed to hospitals and clinics throughout the United States, as well as globally. The CDC is working with pharmacies to offer the COVID-19 vaccine. It’s recommended that you check with your local provider to confirm that they are administering the vaccine and that you qualify at this time.

Q: What can I do to protect myself until the COVID-19 vaccine is available?

The vaccine became available in mid-December to high-risk populations first. This included our front-line healthcare workers, essential workers, those with underlying conditions, and those older than 65. If you do not fall into one of those groups, it may be a few months until you can receive a COVID-19 vaccine.According to the CDC, the best way to protect yourself against COVID-19 is to cover your nose and mouth with a mask when near other people, avoid close contact with anyone who is sick, keep six feet of distance between yourself and others, avoid crowds, and wash your hands often.

In fact, the CDC recently stated that wearing tight-fitting masks, or doubling-up on masks, has proven to be 95 percent effective at decreasing transmission of the virus.

998 Comments
  • Aaryn Crosby
    Posted at 12:06h, 16 February

    Thank you

  • Stacy+Borror
    Posted at 12:06h, 16 February

    Got mine!

  • Kymberly Sisk
    Posted at 12:06h, 16 February

    Thanks

  • Shelby Winchester
    Posted at 12:06h, 16 February

    Thank you..

  • Lisa+Burruss
    Posted at 12:05h, 16 February

    Thanks

  • Teresa Weckerle
    Posted at 12:05h, 16 February

    I did have mine but still uneasy about it

  • Tim D
    Posted at 12:04h, 16 February

    Good info

  • Sherrelle+Hogan
    Posted at 12:04h, 16 February

    Thanks

  • Patricia L Spears
    Posted at 12:04h, 16 February

    Thank you

  • Julie Schonhardt
    Posted at 12:03h, 16 February

    Great info!

  • Samara Jones
    Posted at 12:03h, 16 February

    Thanks

  • Jennice Denton
    Posted at 12:03h, 16 February

    Thank you

  • Lauren+Bako
    Posted at 12:03h, 16 February

    Thanks

  • Jonathan Boles
    Posted at 12:03h, 16 February

    Thx

  • Kelly Wright
    Posted at 12:02h, 16 February

    thanks

  • Teresa+Wells
    Posted at 12:01h, 16 February

    Very happy to say vaccination complete

  • Adessa+Marigliano
    Posted at 12:00h, 16 February

    Thank you

  • Matthew Carrier
    Posted at 12:00h, 16 February

    Thanks for the great info!

  • Cassidy Rhodes
    Posted at 11:59h, 16 February

    Thanks

  • Candace+Shields
    Posted at 11:59h, 16 February

    Glad I took mine as well

  • Carly+Runyon
    Posted at 11:59h, 16 February

    Thank you.

  • Jonathan Reyes
    Posted at 11:59h, 16 February

    Good information.

  • Dora Trombley
    Posted at 11:59h, 16 February

    Thank you

  • Vanessa+Flores
    Posted at 11:59h, 16 February

    Thanks.

  • Gary+R+Higginbotham
    Posted at 11:58h, 16 February

    Glad I have mine!

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