Here are some of the things that you should know about the COVID-19 vaccines.
DO THE VACCINES WORK?
Both Pfizer and Moderna vaccines show approximately 95% efficacy at preventing both mild and severe symptoms of COVID-19. It doesn’t matter how old you are or what your race is.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine has been show to be 85% effective against severe illness.
Efficacy describes how a vaccine performs under controlled, ideal situations. Effectiveness describes how a vaccine performs in real life.
ARE VACCINES MANDATED?
There is not a government mandate to get a vaccine. However, cities and states do have the authority to regulate public health and can mandate vaccines. At this time, there is no such mandate in place in Las Vegas or Never.
CAN I GET FIRED IF I DO NOT GET VACCINATED?
The vaccine can be made compulsory for certain groups of people. For example, if you work in a hospital, you may be required to receive the vaccine. If you work for a university of school, you may also be required. Also, most businesses can require their employees to be vaccinated, especially if they deal with the public. However, employees who are part of a union may be exempt. Anti-discrimination laws also provide some limits.
WILL IT CHANGE MY DNA?
The vaccine will not change your DNA. These are not DNA-based vaccines.
CAN I BE INFECTED AFTER RECEIVING VACCINE?
You can still be infected even after you have been vaccinated. It typically takes a few weeks after vaccination for the body to build protection against the virus.
CAN I HAVE AN ALLERGIC REACTION?
COVID-19 vaccines are safe. Allergic reactions are rare. The vaccine will not give you COVID.
IS NATURAL IMMUNITY BETTER?
Immunity from the vaccines is far safer than natural immunity.
ARE THERE SIDE EFFECTS?
You may have side effects, but these are normal. Possible side effects include chills, tiredness, headache, swollen lymph nodes, nausea and slight fever. Your arm where you receive the shot will also likely be sore for a couple of days. Side effects can be more pronounced after the 2nd shot.
WHAT CAN I TAKE FOR SIDE EFFECTS?
Doctors suggest over-the-counter medications like Tylenol, Motrin, Advil etc. However, do not take before the vaccine since it may affect its effectiveness.
SHOULD I RESCHEDULE MY MAMMOGRAM?
The Cleveland Clinic recommends scheduling your mammogram before getting the vaccine or about 4 to 6 weeks after the 2nd dose. A side effect can be swollen lymph nodes under the arms, which is often a sign of breast cancer.
CAN IT CAUSE INFERTILITY?
The vaccine will not cause infertility.
WHAT IF I AM PREGNANT?
Pregnant (and breastfeeding) women can receive the vaccine. According to the CDC, your baby will also be protected. However, you may want to consult your doctor.
WHAT IF I AM ALLERGIC TO PENICILLIN?
People who are allergic to penicillin can still be vaccinated. However, you might be asked to wait at the vaccination clinic for 30 minutes vs. 15 minutes.
CAN THE VACCINE CAUSE SEVERE REACTIONS?
Severe reactions are uncommon. The occurrence rate is 4.5 per 1 million, which is comparable to other vaccines.
If you have had severe reactions to any ingredient in the vaccines previously, you should not get the COVID-19 vaccines.
WHAT IF I HAVE ASTHMA?
People who have asthma should get the vaccine even people who use inhaled corticosteroids, oral corticosteroids or biologics.
WHAT IF I HAVE HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE?
People who have high blood pressure or heart problems should get vaccinated as soon as possible.
SHOULD PEOPLE OF ALL RACES BE VACCINATED?
People of all races should get the vaccine. Although there was not a high number of Black or Hispanic/Latinos included in the clinical trials, there is evidence that is is working in those populations.
WILL I HAVE AN ALLERGIC REACTION IF I HAVE HAD FACIAL FILLERS?
Dermatologists say it is safe to get vaccinated even if you have had facial fillers. Although there have been rare reports of swelling, it does not appear to be a major problem.
CAN I BE TRACKED BECAUSE OF THE VACCINE?
There is no microchip or tracking device of any kind in either vaccine.
WILL COVID-19 EVER GO AWAY?
COVID-19 is not going away. It is here to stay.
CAN I GET VACCINE IF I TAKE PRESCRIPTION DRUGS?
Medical experts say the vast majority of prescription drugs will work just as well after you get the vaccine and won’t diminish the effectiveness of the shot. If in doubt, as your doctor.
SHOULD I GET VACCINE IF I HAVE ALREADY HAD IT?
You should still get the vaccine even if you have already have COVID-19. There is evidence that it is possible to contract the virus twice. However, the CDC recommends waiting 90 days after recovery to get the vaccine.
CAN I SPEND TIME WITH OTHERS AFTER BEING VACCINATED?
Once you have been vaccinated and have given it time to become effective, you may spend time with other people who have also been vaccinated.
CDC: Help stop the pandemic by getting vaccinated
Jon Hopkins Medicine: Safety and Effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccine
UC Davis: The real facts about common COVID-19 vaccine myths
Top 10 Mythys about COVID-19 vaccine
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