There will be a limited supply of COVID-19 vaccines before the end of 2020, but supply will continually increase in the weeks and months that follow. CUPHD is working with partners at all levels, including hospitals, health care providers, and community leaders, on flexible COVID-19 vaccination programs that can accommodate different vaccines and scenarios.
COVID-19 vaccine will not be widely available until 2021. Eventually everyone who wants a vaccine will be able to get one.The first supplies of vaccine will be limited and given first to specific groups at highest risk, such as healthcare workers and people in nursing homes.When vaccine is widely available, healthcare clinics, pharmacies, and drive-through and walk-through clinics will likely provide vaccinations.COVID vaccine will be covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most private insurance, and the cost of the vaccine will be covered for people who are uninsured.Vaccine safety is a priority. All COVID-19 vaccines must go through a rigorous and multi-step testing and approval process before they can be used. They will only be approved if they pass safety and effectiveness standards. Vaccines will also be monitored for safety once they are given.Only licensed and trained health professionals can give vaccinations.A safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine is a critical component of the U.S. strategy to reduce COVID-19-related illnesses, hospitalizations, and deaths. For more info, see IDPH's COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs.
FACT: COVID-19 vaccines will not give you COVID-19
None of the COVID-19 vaccines currently in development in the United States use the live virus that causes COVID-19. There are several different types of vaccines in development. However, the goal for each of them is to teach our immune systems how to recognize and fight the virus that causes COVID-19. Sometimes this process can cause symptoms, such as fever. These symptoms are normal and are a sign that the body is building immunity. Learn more about how COVID-19 vaccines work.
It typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity after vaccination. That means it’s possible a person could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after vaccination and get sick. This is because the vaccine has not had enough time to provide protection.
FACT: COVID-19 vaccines will not cause you to test positive on COVID-19 viral tests
Vaccines currently in clinical trials in the United States won’t cause you to test positive on viral tests, which are used to see if you have a current infection.
If your body develops an immune response, which is the goal of vaccination, there is a possibility you may test positive on some antibody tests. Antibody tests indicate you had a previous infection and that you may have some level of protection against the virus. Experts are currently looking at how COVID-19 vaccination may affect antibody testing results.
FACT: People who have gotten sick with COVID-19 may still benefit from getting vaccinated
Due to the severe health risks associated with COVID-19 and the fact that re-infection with COVID-19 is possible, people may be advised to get a COVID-19 vaccine even if they have been sick with COVID-19 before.
At this time, experts do not know how long someone is protected from getting sick again after recovering from COVID-19. The immunity someone gains from having an infection, called natural immunity, varies from person to person. Some early evidence suggests natural immunity may not last very long.
We won’t know how long immunity produced by vaccination lasts until we have a vaccine and more data on how well it works.
Both natural immunity and vaccine-induced immunity are important aspects of COVID-19 that experts are trying to learn more about, and CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.
FACT: Getting vaccinated can help prevent getting sick with COVID-19
While many people with COVID-19 have only a mild illness, others may get a severe illness or they may even die. There is no way to know how COVID-19 will affect you, even if you are not at increased risk of severe complications. If you get sick, you also may spread the disease to friends, family, and others around you while you are sick. COVID-19 vaccination helps protect you by creating an antibody response without having to experience sickness. Learn more about how COVID-19 vaccines work.
FACT: Receiving an mRNA vaccine will not alter your DNA
mRNA stands for messenger ribonucleic acid and can most easily be described as instructions for how to make a protein or even just a piece of a protein. mRNA is not able to alter or modify a person’s genetic makeup (DNA). The mRNA from a COVID-19 vaccine never enter the nucleus of the cell, which is where our DNA are kept. This means the mRNA does not affect or interact with our DNA in any way. Instead, COVID-19 vaccines that use mRNA work with the body’s natural defenses to safely develop protection (immunity) to disease. Learn more about how COVID-19 mRNA vaccines work.
The safety of COVID-19 vaccines is a top priority.
The U.S. vaccine safety system ensures that all vaccines are as safe as possible. Learn how federal partners are working together to ensure the safety of COVID-19 vaccines.
Many vaccines are being developed and tested, but some might be ready before others—CDC is planning for many possibilities.
CDC is working with partners at all levels, including healthcare associations, on flexible COVID-19 vaccination programs that can accommodate different vaccines and scenarios. CDC has been in contact with your state public health department to help with your state’s planning. State, tribal, local, and territorial health departments are critical to making sure vaccines are available to communities.
At least at first, COVID-19 vaccines might be used under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
There may be a limited supply of COVID-19 vaccines before the end of 2020, but supply will continually increase in the weeks and months that follow.
The goal is for everyone to be able to easily get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as large quantities are available. The plan is to have several thousand vaccination providers available, including doctors’ offices, retail pharmacies, hospitals, and federally qualified health centers.
If there is limited supply, some groups may be recommended to get a COVID-19 vaccine first.
Experts are working on how to distribute these limited vaccines in a fair, ethical, and transparent way.
At first, COVID-19 vaccines may not be recommended for children.
In early clinical trials for various COVID-19 vaccines, only non-pregnant adults participated. However, clinical trials continue to expand those recruited to participate. The groups recommended to receive the vaccines could change in the future.
Cost will not be an obstacle to getting vaccinated against COVID-19.
Vaccine doses purchased with U.S. taxpayer dollars will be given to the American people at no cost. However, vaccine providers will be able to charge administration fees for giving or administering the shot to someone. Vaccine providers can get this fee reimbursed by the patient’s public or private insurance company or, for uninsured patients, by the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Provider Relief Fund.
COVID-19 vaccine planning is being updated as new information becomes available.
Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for COVID-19 Vaccines
An Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) is a mechanism to facilitate the availability and use of medical countermeasures, including vaccines, during public health emergencies, such as the current COVID-19 pandemic.
FDA is globally respected for its scientific standards of vaccine safety, effectiveness and quality. The agency provides scientific and regulatory advice to vaccine developers and undertakes a rigorous evaluation of the scientific information through all phases of clinical trials, which continues after a vaccine has been approved by FDA or authorized for emergency use.
FDA recognizes the gravity of the current public health emergency and the importance of facilitating availability, as soon as possible, of vaccines to prevent COVID-19 - vaccines that the public will trust and have confidence in receiving.