What You Should Know About the COVID-19 Vaccine

This last year has been painful and stressful for everyone. The pandemic has stopped school and made a lot of people lose their jobs. COVID-19 has put so many people’s lives at risk and has even taken away some of our loved ones. In the midst of all of this, frontline workers have been working hard and scientists have also worked hard to create a vaccine. However, questions have arisen in regards to the vaccine: Is the vaccine safe? Will it work? 

First off, what is the COVID-19 vaccine? Despite the fact that there are many vaccines that are in development, they all serve the same purpose, to help our immune system recognize and fight the virus. In general, this vaccine is an inactivated vaccine that consists of the virus’ particles or bacteria to kill off the stronger version of the virus. So far 71.3 million vaccines have been given globally in 57 countries.

What is the process like after receiving the vaccine? It will take a couple of weeks before the body can officially build immunity. During this time period, you may produce symptoms/reactions like fevers, fatigue, headache, aching limbs, and redness, swelling, or pain around the injection site. These are all normal symptoms as the body is protecting itself against the virus. If you are symptoms worsen like, the redness increases after 24 hours of getting the vaccine, or if your side effects do not go away after a few days you should call a doctor or healthcare provider.

Is it possible to get the virus even after getting the vaccine? The answer is yes. Even after getting the vaccine, there is still a chance you can get the virus. The vaccine has not fully proven its protection yet so we do not know how long the immunity will last. After taking the vaccine, you may not test positive for COVID-19 but you will probably test positive for other antibody tests. This means you may have had a previous infection and now you might have some level of protection against the virus. If you have had COVID-19 prior, then there is a higher chance of getting re-infected.

A screenshot of a tweet made on the Malden Police Twitter account.

Here are some other questions about the vaccine. What are the ingredients in the COVID-19 vaccine? The vaccine does not include eggs, preservatives, or latex. What percent of people need to be vaccinated to have herd immunity to COVID-19? Experts do not yet know what percentage of people need to be vaccinated to achieve this goal. Who is paying for the vaccines? The vaccines are purchased with the US taxpayer, costing the American people nothing.

If you are not ready to get the vaccine, here are some tips to follow to protect yourself from getting the virus. Wear a mask over your nose and your mouth, stay at least six feet away from others, avoid large crowds, wash your hands often, if you feel sick then stay home, avoid rooms that do not offer fresh air, cover your cough and sneezes with a tissue, and last but not least disinfect objects that are touched daily.

For further reading on frequently asked questions about the COVID-19 vaccine, click here

For more information on vaccine distribution, click here

For more general information on the COVID-19 vaccine, click here.  

For information on the recovery after receiving the vaccine, click here.

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