Vaccines authorized for emergency use by the FDA have demonstrated the ability to substantially reduce your risk of getting COVID-19. In addition, based on what scientists know about other virus vaccines, it is believed that even if you do get COVID-19 after being vaccinated, your risk of serious complications is substantially reduced. Getting vaccinated will help protect not only you, but also your friends, family and other members of your community.
We don’t know enough about “natural immunity” when it comes to COVID-19.
With some viruses, after you’ve been infected, your body develops a natural defense against getting it again. Because COVID-19 is so new, we don’t yet have enough evidence to gauge if that is the case. In addition, relying on natural immunity is risky because it’s so hard to predict when COVID-19 will cause serious complications and death.
Vaccines are being carefully tested and evaluated.
It may seem as though COVID-19 vaccines are being “rushed” to market, but in fact they’ve been tested in clinical trials just as any other vaccine and are required to meet strict standards. By the time any vaccine is authorized for emergency use, it has been tested on thousands of people and demonstrated no significant harmful side effects. There are currently more than 30,000 people enrolled in COVID-19 vaccine clinical trials. Many people were recruited to participate in these trials to see how the vaccines offer protection to people of different ages, different races, and different ethnicities, as well as those with different medical conditions.
Because COVID-19 infection rates are so widespread, many government agencies have been involved in expediting development and clinical trials to get vaccines to Americans as quickly as possible. The FDA’s Emergency Use Authorization was created for just these circumstances—an urgent health crisis.
None of the COVID-19 vaccines currently in development use a live virus to build immunity in your body (like, for example, the chickenpox vaccine does). The body may develop a mild fever as it builds an immune response, but that does not mean you’re infected with COVID-19. The vaccine will not cause you to test positive for COVID-19.
It’s one of our best tools to stop the spread of the virus.
While wearing masks, social distancing and washing your hands frequently are important to help prevent COVID-19 spread—and you should continue to do all these things for the foreseeable future—we need to use every tool we have to fight COVID-19. Even if you take every precaution, you could still be exposed to COVID-19, and getting vaccinated will prepare your immune system to help fight off infection.
Learn more about why you should get a COVID-19 vaccine when available in the video below.
Roll Up Your Sleeves
Why You Should Get the COVID-19 Vaccine
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