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COVID-19 vaccine: It's safe and it works


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The COVID-19 vaccine is safe, and helps slow the spread of the disease. All U.S. residents age 12 and older may get the vaccine. It's time to do our part. Get the vaccine, even if you've already had COVID-19. Together, we can move beyond the pandemic.


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Facts about the Delta variant

Here are six facts to know about COVID-19 and the Delta variant.

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Frequently asked questions

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COVID-19 vaccine FAQs

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  • It will lower your chances of getting COVID-19 or becoming seriously sick. 
    The vaccine helps your body protect itself from COVID-19. It will also help keep you from spreading COVID-19 to others.  

    • It will help you protect yourself, your family and your community.
      You can spread COVID-19 without feeling sick.
    • It will help stop COVID-19.
      The more people who get the vaccine, the less chance COVID-19 has to spread. We need to use all the tools we have to stop it. 
  • Yes. You can get a COVID-19 vaccine and other vaccines at the same visit. You no longer need to wait 14 days between vaccinations. 

  • COVID-19 vaccines are safe. They work well at keeping people from getting COVID-19. You can read more about it on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.

    The FDA follows a very strict system to make sure vaccines are safe. The FDA followed this system with all of the COVID-19 vaccines that it approved. 

    The FDA keeps collecting information about vaccines after they are approved. It watches for new information about side effects. You can find out more about COVID-19 vaccine safety on the CDC website. 

    COVID-19 vaccines are key to slowing the pandemic. Take care of yourself and others. Get the vaccine as soon as it’s offered to you.

  • You can find a vaccine near you here.

  • It depends. If a person has only one dose (shot) of a two-dose vaccine, they should still wear a mask, physically distance and wash their hands regularly to protect themselves from COVID-19.

    According to the CDC, fully vaccinated people can go back to many activities that they did prior to the pandemic, without wearing a mask or physically distancing.

    But to help protect fully vaccinated people and others from COVID-19, including the Delta variant, the CDC and American Medical Association suggest the following: 

    • Wear a mask in public indoor places and crowded outdoor spaces in areas with substantial or high COVID-19 infection rates. 
    • Wear a mask and follow other public health safety guidelines if you or someone in your household is unvaccinated, has a weakened immune system (how the body fights illness) or has an underlying medical condition.
    • Wear a mask in all indoor schools, whether or not a person is vaccinated. 
    • Wear a mask for 14 days, or until you get a negative test result, when in public indoor settings if you were exposed to someone who might have a COVID-19 infection. The first COVID-19 test should be taken between three to five days after you were exposed.
    • Keep on following any mask-wearing requirements based on state, local or business guidance. Refer to the CDC guidance for complete public health safety guidance. 
  • According to the CDC, COVID-19 vaccines will not give you COVID-19. The vaccines that the FDA has approved:

    • Don’t have the COVID-19 virus 
    • Can’t make you sick with COVID-19 

    There are other COVID-19 vaccines being developed in the United States. None of those use the live virus that causes COVID-19. 

    The goal for each vaccine is to teach the body to find and fight the COVID-19 virus. Read more about these facts and others on the CDC website.

  • The COVID-19 vaccine has been tested in clinical trials. It was only approved because it can greatly lower the chances of getting COVID-19.

    Even if you catch COVID-19, this vaccine may help keep you from getting very ill. Your body will be ready to fight the virus.

  • Yes, you should be vaccinated even if you already had COVID-19 because:

    • Research has not yet shown how long you are protected from getting COVID-19 again after you recover from COVID-19.
    • Vaccination helps protect you even if you’ve already had COVID-19.

    According to the CDC, if you were treated for COVID-19 with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma, you should wait 90 days before getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Talk to your doctor if you are unsure what treatments you received.

  • The short answer is "no." It won't change your genes. 

    The term, mRNA, stands for “messenger ribonucleic acid.” It’s basically directions for making a protein or a piece of a protein. 

    The mRNA from a COVID-19 vaccine never enters the part of the cell where our genes are kept. So the mRNA can’t change your genes. 

    Instead, COVID-19 mRNA vaccines work with the body’s natural defenses. It helps the body find and fight COVID-19. 

  • According to the CDC, experts are continuing to study the variants of the virus that causes COVID-19. Viruses constantly change through mutation (changes over time), and new variants of a virus are expected to happen over time. 

    There are multiple variants of the virus that cause COVID-19 in the United States. The COVID-19 Delta variant spreads more easily than other virus strains. It may be nearly two times as contagious (able to spread) as previous variants.

    FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines help stop the virus from spreading. The vaccines also help lower the chances for virus variants to develop (grow) and spread. According to the CDC, COVID-19 vaccines do help protect against variants, and they will keep being closely studied. 

  • COVID-19 vaccination is recommended by the CDC for all people age 12 years and older, including people who are pregnant, breastfeeding, trying to get pregnant now or might become pregnant in the future. 

    Pregnant and recently pregnant people are more likely to get severely ill with COVID-19 compared with nonpregnant people. 

    Getting a COVID-19 vaccine can protect you from severe illness from COVID-19. If you have questions, a conversation with your health care provider about the COVID-19 vaccine may be helpful.  

  • The CDC and FDA have authorized an extra dose of COVID-19 vaccines for certain immunocompromised people as defined by CDC.

    It is recommended for those eligible for the third shot that people get the third shot a minimum of 28 days after their second dose of the two-dose vaccine, ideally getting the same manufacturer as the first two shots. 

    People who are immunocompromised, and those who live with them, should keep on wearing face masks, physically distance and wash hands regularly when outside of their household. 

  • An extra dose of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine is not yet authorized. The CDC and FDA are actively working to provide guidance on this question. 

  • COVID-19 vaccines are effective at helping stop infection, serious illness and death. Most people who get COVID-19 are unvaccinated. But since vaccines are not 100% effective at preventing infection, some people who are fully vaccinated will still get COVID-19. 

    An infection of a fully vaccinated person is referred to as a "breakthrough infection." You can learn more about breakthrough infections on the CDC website.

  • According to the CDC, while most people get over COVID-19 within weeks of illness, some people have post-COVID-19 conditions that go on four weeks or more after infection. 

    Studies show that between 27% to 33% of patients who get COVID-19 and were not hospitalized had some lasting symptoms. This happens no matter their age, prior health or severity of their infection.

    While much is still unknown, the CDC reports these “long-haul” conditions can come to life in a variety of ways. This ranges from difficulty breathing, fatigue, joint pain or mood changes.  

    Even more serious issues like multi-organ damage or autoimmune conditions can happen. More information is available on the CDC website. 



*As of August 2021