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Lee Health COVID-19 Vaccine Updates

Last updated: June 21, 2022

Frequently Asked Questions about the COVID-19 Vaccine

General Questions
Vaccine Safety Questions
Vaccination of Children and Adolescents

How can I get vaccinated at Lee Health?

Anyone over the age of 6 months is eligible for vaccination against COVID-19. Scheduling information can be found here.

How must does the COVID-19 vaccine cost? 

All COVID-19 vaccines are administered at no cost to you. We do ask that you please bring your personal identification card and medical insurance card if you have one.

Should I get the vaccine even if I have already had COVID?

Yes, we encourage you to get the vaccine even if you have already had COVID. You will be eligible to receive the vaccine after you complete your quarantine or isolation period following your COVID-19 infection.

Should I get the vaccine even if I have tested positive for COVID antibodies?

Yes, if you are eligible to receive the vaccine and have tested positive for antibodies you should still get the vaccine. This is because antibodies may only stay in our bodies for a limited time and the vaccine provides further protection.

Is it a benefit or risk to take the vaccine if you are on immunosuppression medication?

People on immunosuppression medications may not mount the same immune response to the vaccine as those who are not on those medications. It is not a risk to take the vaccine, but protection may not be equal. Consult your physician for medical advice about getting vaccinated.

Frequently Asked Questions about Vaccine Safety

Since the start of the pandemic, the United States has logged millions of COVID-19 cases and more than a million deaths deaths from COVID-19. We need to utilize every available tool to stop the spread of this highly contagious and potentially deadly virus. While wearing masks, staying socially distanced, avoiding crowds and frequently washing hands have proven effective at slowing the spread, vaccinations can increase immunity and help stop it.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports:

  • All COVID-19 vaccines available in the U.S. have been shown to be safe and effective at preventing the disease, and have been given Emergency Use Authorization by the FDA.
  • Based on data from clinical trials and what is known about vaccines for other diseases, experts believe that getting a COVID-19 vaccine will help keep you from becoming seriously ill if you do contract COVID-19.
  • Getting vaccinated helps protect others around you, particularly those who may be at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19.
  • Additional vaccines currently in development are being evaluated in clinical trials and will be authorized for use only if they are shown to be safe and effective.
  • Everyone 6 months and older is now eligible for a COVID-19 vaccination, and vaccines are widely available for everyone at no cost.

How was the vaccine developed so quickly?

The development of the COVID-19 vaccines did not occur as quickly as it may seem. Researchers had a head start after formulating vaccines for other coronaviruses. They applied the knowledge they obtained after the 2003 SARS epidemic and the 2012 MERS outbreak. The formulation of the Ebola vaccine also taught them more about viruses, although Ebola is not a coronavirus. The rapid spread of COVID-19 made developing vaccines a worldwide priority, which allowed funding to become available quickly and enabled scientists to work rapidly to ensure vaccine safety.

How has vaccine safety been tested?

Before receiving Emergency Use Authorization from the FDA, the vaccines are tested in three phases and inspected to ensure safety.

  • Phase 1: The vaccine is tested in healthy adults, usually between 20 and 80 generally healthy people. Experts evaluate the type of immune response created as well as safety, dosage and side effects.
  • Phase 2: The vaccine is given in various dosages to hundreds of adults who may have a variety of health issues and come from different backgrounds. These studies provide additional safety information regarding common short-term side effects, risks, dosages, immune response, and may provide information regarding the vaccine’s effectiveness.
  • Phase 3: The vaccine is administered to thousands of adults of varying ages and backgrounds. Some people receive the vaccine, some receive a placebo and their disease protection levels are compared. Experts continue to track data to learn more about the disease.

Is the COVID-19 vaccine safe for pregnant people?

If you are pregnant, you can receive a COVID-19 vaccine. While it is not required, you may want to discuss it with your health care provider if you’re unsure about whether to get vaccinated. Experts believe the vaccine is unlikely to pose a risk to those who are pregnant. The CDC and FDA have safety monitoring procedures in place to collect and monitor information about COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy. Early data have not identified any safety concerns for pregnant people who were vaccinated or for their babies.

Will a vaccine received during pregnancy also protect a baby after birth?

Recent reports showed that people who received COVID-19 mRNA vaccines (Pfizer or Moderna) during pregnancy, mostly during their third trimester, have passed antibodies to their fetuses, which could help protect the babies after birth.

Pregnant people are encouraged to participate in the v-safe pregnancy registry, CDC’s smartphone-based tool that uses text messaging and web surveys to provide personalized health check-ins after vaccination. V-safe gathers information about the health of pregnant people who have received a COVID-19 vaccine. Participation is voluntary and participants may opt out at any time.

Will the vaccine cause fertility problems?

There is currently no evidence that COVID-19 vaccination causes any problems with fertility or pregnancy. Like all vaccines, scientists are studying COVID-19 vaccines carefully for side effects now and will continue to study them for years into the future.

Does the vaccine cause side effects?

The vaccines may cause side effects in some people, such as sore muscles, fatigue, or mild fever. These reactions mean that your body is learning how to fight COVID-19 if you are exposed. For most people who experience them, side effects will last only a day or two. Having any of these side effects does not mean that you have COVID-19. If you have questions about your health after your vaccination, talk to your doctor.

Frequently Asked Questions about Vaccinating Children

The expansion of COVID-19 vaccination for ages 6 months+ is a significant step in the fight against the pandemic. While children and adolescents generally have a milder course of the disease, in the first 13 months of the pandemic approximately 1.5 million COVID-19 cases were reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) among those age 11-17. As of May 12, 2021, the CDC reported 287 deaths among children (all ages).

Parents can rest assured that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (AICP) undertook a rigorous and thorough review of the vaccine research data before concluding that known and potential benefits of this vaccine in individuals 6 months of age and older outweigh the known and potential risks.

Will the vaccine affect my child’s fertility?

There is currently no evidence that COVID-19 vaccination causes any problems with fertility or pregnancy. Like all vaccines, scientists are studying COVID-19 vaccines carefully for side effects now and will continue to study them for years into the future.

What types of symptoms does the vaccine cause among minors?

Post-vaccine symptoms associated with children are similar to those of adults. The vaccines elicit an immune response that could include pain at the injection site, tiredness for the next 24 hours or a headache. Some children reported chills or muscle pain. Less frequent side effects include fever, joint pain and nausea. All of these symptoms are short-lived and the risks of a COVID-19 infection outweighs those of the vaccination.

Where can I get more information about the COVID vaccine?

For the latest information on the COVID vaccine from the Centers for Disease Control, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/faq.html.