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Like all vaccines, the COVID-19 vaccine does not instantly provide protection. It takes time for your immune system to respond to the vaccine and develop disease-fighting antibodies. To be fully protected, you must wait until after receiving your second dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines.
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No, there is no cost or copay for the vaccine.
The vaccines are important to help stop the COVID-19 pandemic. Studies show that COVID-19 vaccines are effective at keeping you from getting COVID-19 and from getting seriously ill from COVID-19. COVID-19 vaccination helps protect you, your family and friends, and our community, and is an important tool to help get us back to normal. For more information on COVID vaccines visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.
There are currently two vaccines available in the U.S. that require two doses:
For the Janssen (Johnson and Johnson) vaccine, no second dose is required. The Janssen vaccine has been shown to be about 72% effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19 infection starting 14 days after vaccination. Learn more about the Janssen vaccine.
All of the vaccines are extremely effective at preventing hospitalization and death related to COVID-19.
The Public Health and Medical communities are confident that these vaccines are safe and effective. While the process to develop these vaccines may seem fast, they were built on years of thorough research and application addressing other types of coronaviruses. All the necessary steps and safety measures were followed during the development of the vaccines, and every study, every phase, and every trial was reviewed by the FDA and safety boards of medical experts. The speed of development was due to the sharing of research and massive collaboration on a scale never attempted before.
See updated guidelines regarding quarantine requirements.
Like with all vaccines, there is a chance you may experience some symptoms as your body builds an immune response. Potential side effects may include pain, soreness or swelling at the injection site on the arm, fatigue, fever, or headache. These are signs the vaccine is working and your immune system is responding to the vaccine and learning how to fight off the virus. Mild pain relievers should help you feel better, but should not be taken before you feel symptoms or before you get the vaccine. If you don't feel better within two or three days you should follow up with your doctor.
If you experience other COVID-19 symptoms, such as congestion, cough, shortness of breath, runny nose, sore throat or loss of taste and smell, they are not related to receiving the vaccine and could mean you have COVID-19. You should consult your healthcare provider and get tested. The vaccine does not cause COVID-19 and contains no ingredients that could cause COVID-19, but you could have already been exposed to COVID-19 before receiving your vaccine or before you were protected.
You can visit the following websites for more information:
Frequently asked questions about COVID-19 vaccination: