As we continue to practice safety precautions to maintain our health and safety, many are asking about the next step curbing the pandemic: COVID-19 vaccines. Like the annual flu shot, COVID-19 vaccines work with your immune system so your body can fight the virus if you are exposed. Currently, two vaccines are being administered, and three others are being reviewed.
The two authorized vaccines are known by the companies that made them, Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna. Both require two shots, given 21 days apart. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers more information about each vaccine, including side effects, how well the vaccine works, and who should not get vaccinated. Click on the links below for each:
OTHER CDC RESOURCES
Myths and Facts about COVID-19 Vaccines: Below are short answers to common questions about the vaccine. Click here to read details.
- Can the vaccine make me sick with COVID-19? No.
- After getting the vaccine, will I test positive for COVID-19? No.
- If I already had COVID-19, should I still get vaccinated? Yes.
- Will the vaccine protect me from getting sick with COVID-19? Yes.
Understanding How COVID-19 Vaccines Work: This website page offers the basic science behind the body’s immune system and how vaccines work to provide protection against viruses. Click here to read more.
VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
The vaccine supply is limited, and each state has its own plan for vaccinations. The Virginia health department is rolling out the vaccines in different phases to different groups of people. In the first phase, 1a, healthcare personnel and residents of long-term facilities have the first priority in getting the vaccine. We are currently in Phase 1b, with more groups eligible to become vaccinated.
You can find out more information about the phases and eligibility on the state website at www.vdh.virginia.gov/covid-19-vaccine/#general19.
In the meantime, we can continue to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 by continuing to follow the basic safety precautions: wearing masks, washing hands, social distancing, and avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces.
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