Covid-19 Vaccine Main Facts
The Covid-19 vaccine is a big step in putting an end to the pandemic. From December 14, 2020 to February 14, 2021, more than 52 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine were applied in the US. The Covid-19 vaccine is free.
As of today, there are two approved vaccines for Covid-19: Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine and Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine , which we will describe later in this post. There are several others currently in Phase 3 of Clinical Trials, including viral vector vaccines.
The vaccine “teaches the immune system to recognize and fight” the Covid-19 virus. Some side effects, like fever, are normal as the body is building immunity against the Covid-19 causing virus.
If you get the Covid-19 vaccine, you will not test positive in a PCR Covid-19 test.
Why Get the Covid-19 Vaccine?
Besides developing protection against Covid-19 for yourself, you may also protect those around you, especially at-risk populations.
However, if you have had a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) to ingredients in a vaccine in the past, please check this guide from the CDC, which explains why an mRNA vaccine is not for you.
Covid-19 Vaccine Types
Messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines are a new approach to treating infectious diseases. According to the CDC, mRNA vaccines “teach our cells how to make a protein (also called the spike protein) that triggers an immune response inside our bodies.” This will produce the antibodies needed to fight the Covid-19 virus. Both Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine and Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine are mRNA vaccines.
According to the information from the clinical trials, the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine was 92%-95% effective at preventing the Covid-19 illness.
This vaccine requires 2 shots, 21 days apart given in the muscle of the upper arm.
The most common side effects include pain, swelling, and redness in the arm where you received the shot. You may also feel tired, have chills or a headache. Nonetheless, these should go away in just a few days. Most side effects on people have been mild to moderate, with a small number of people showing severe side effects.
Based on the clinical trial evidence, this vaccine was 94.1% effective at preventing the Covid-19 illness.
The Moderna Covid-19 vaccine is given as a shot in the muscle of the upper arm, and 2 shots are required (28 days apart).
The most common symptoms after getting the vaccine include pain, swelling, and redness in the arm where you got the shot. You may also feel chills, tired, or have a headache. Nonetheless, these side effects should go away in a few days.
Covid-19 Vaccine Before, During, and After
Before your Covid-19 Vaccine Appointment
The CDC recommends learning about the different types of Covid-19 vaccines and how they work before you get one. When you get it, both you and your healthcare worker will need to properly wear a face mask and stay 6 feet away from others.
During your Covid-19 Vaccine Appointment
According to the CDC you should receive a:
- Vaccination card or printout that tells you what COVID-19 vaccine you received, the date you received it, and where you received it.
- Paper or electronic version of a fact sheet that tells you more about the specific COVID-19 vaccine you are being offered.
After your Covid-19 Vaccine Appointment
You will most likely have to get 2 shots total unless your healthcare provider tells you otherwise.
Remember that you may feel symptoms for a few days after getting the Covid-19 vaccine, but these should go away.
Covid-19 Vaccine Availability
The CDC is providing vaccine rollout recommendations (based on the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices) to federal, state, and local governments. Contact your state health department to ask about the vaccine availability times.
Getting the Vaccine if You Currently Have Covid-19
If you are currently sick with Covid-19, you should wait until you are fully recovered to get vaccinated.
If you have had Coronarivus before, it is still recommended to get vaccinated. Although it is not common to get sick again from Covid-19 if you have had it before, it is not impossible.
Receiving the Covid-19 Vaccine in California
Vaccinations in California are being prioritized according to age and risk. Most of the California population should have access to the vaccine by spring 2021.
As a California resident, you can sign up at: myturn.ca.gov or call (833) 422-4255. You can still sign up even if it is not your turn yet.
Individuals with the following conditions may be given priority: cancer, chronic kidney disease, down syndrome, pregnancy, heart conditions, severe obesity, and others that would be considered at the highest risk of getting gravely sick from Covid-19.