With the emergence of the COVID-19 vaccine, many people began to see the light at the end of a very long and dark tunnel. While it will still take a while to get everyone vaccinated, there is hope that people can return to the things they love and miss. They will be able to visit with family and friends, go to the store without masks, and gather at sporting events, concerts, movies, and more.
While many Americans are excited about the vaccine, some are still unsure if they want to take it and have valid questions and reservations about its safety, effectiveness, and cost. In this blog, we hope to answer some of those questions and provide trusted information and sites that you can visit to get more information.
First of all, the vaccine is FREE to everyone. You do not have to have any health insurance to receive the vaccine, and it is free no matter where you go to get your vaccine.
Secondly, some people have concerns about how quickly the vaccine made it to market.
- The COVID-19 Vaccine itself is new; however, the underlying virus (corona) is not. The Coronavirus has been around and a subject of study and vaccines for decades. Scientists from other countries and agencies began to collaborate on a vaccine as soon as COVID-19 started to spread.
- The mRNA technology, which the Pfizer and Moderna (the two U.S. based companies that have developed the vaccine) vaccines use, has been in development for several years, and they were ready to test it in a real vaccine when COVID-19 began to spread in the U.S. So while it appeared that the vaccine was developed quickly, the building blocks have been around for a long time.
- Both the Pfizer and the Moderna Vaccines went through the same process and testing as any other vaccine. In fact, between the two of them, there were 70,000 people in their trials. The CDC standard for most vaccines only uses about 10,000 people in their trials.
- Another difference in the release speed is cost; in a standard vaccine, companies have to acquire funding, which is done between each trial and is time-consuming. Because this was an emergency and governments were willing to help with the financing, this eliminated that step, speeding up the process. The companies were also producing the vaccine while going through the final stages with the FDA, CDC, and ACIP so that it could ship within hours of approval.
Additionally, there are concerns about side effects. While there are some side effects to this vaccine, just like any medication or other vaccines, they are mild, and the most common include the following:
- Pain, Swelling, Redness in the arm at the spot of the shot
The side effects usually only last about 24 hours.
There are also some concerns about allergies.
The vaccines contain mRNA, which tells your body to produce the antibodies needed to fight off Covid-19, salt, sugar, and fat. It does not have:
- The COVID-19 virus
- Fetal Tissue
- Stem cells
Once it uses mRNA and no longer needs it, your body will get rid of it.
There is lots of folklore going around about the vaccine on social media and the internet, and these claims are not valid. You may hear things such as:
- It will alter my DNA
- There is a microchip embedded
- It will cause me to get COVID-19
If you still have questions or are unsure about the vaccine or how it will affect you, please consult with your doctor. You can also speak to someone who has had the vaccine and use credible sites to do additional research.
Supplies of the vaccine are limited, and both Florida and North Carolina have developed phases based on CDC guidance that they are working through to make sure that everyone who wants a vaccine receives one.
Until the majority of people get vaccinated, the individuals we serve, our families and others in our community, as well as ourselves, will be in danger of contracting COVID-19 with the possibility of severe symptoms. Getting the Vaccine is the best way to stop the spread of COVID-19. CBC will also continue to share information from trusted sources to help keep you informed about the vaccine and when you may have the opportunity to get the shot yourself. Keep an eye on our social media pages, our website, and regular emails for more information.