The COVID-19 vaccine is the fastest vaccine developed in history, which has led to some reservations about its safety. With the help of previous research into other coronaviruses, scientists around the world collaborated and shared their datasets to quickly develop the vaccine. The COVID-19 vaccines were fast-tracked, but this does not mean they are unsafe. Like all other vaccines, they were put through laboratory trials and three phases of clinical trials to determine their safety and effectiveness. The fast-tracked elements did not affect the accuracy of trial results. It’s important to learn COVID vaccine facts.
Misinformation about the COVID-19 vaccine continues to be a problem. You can’t get coronavirus from the vaccine; it does not contain any active viral material. Many assume that you don’t need a vaccine if you have already been sick, but you should be vaccinated to prevent reinfection. The vaccine will not end masks and social distancing immediately. Full protection may not develop until weeks after the second shot, and vaccinated people may still be able to act as asymptomatic spreaders. The vaccine does not cause autism or damage to children or babies, nor does it weaken the immune system. However, vaccines do protect you against COVID-19 and protect others by building herd immunity.
Pfizer, Moderna, and Jannsen are currently the three authorized vaccines in the United States, and there are another three in the final phase of clinical trials: AstraZeneca, and Novavax. The CDC recommends that healthcare workers and long-term residents receive vaccines first. Frontline essential workers and people 75 years or older are next to receive the vaccine. Then, younger people and the rest of the essential worker population are eligible to receive theirs. Vaccines will be distributed at many different locations. Following your local health department and watching state press conferences can alert you when you are eligible to receive a vaccine and where to receive it. Clinical trials have been proceeding well in terms of younger demographics, as children as young as age 12 are currently able to receive the vaccine.
Knowledge is power – make sure to fight misinformation and keep people informed about the facts behind the COVID vaccine. People are hesitant given the speed of development, but such hesitations can be overcome with proper explanation. Learn more about COVID vaccine facts in the infographic below:
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