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COVID-19 Vaccine Frequently Asked Questions

Although many of us have not had access to the COVID-19 vaccine yet, it’s important to get informed so you are ready when the time comes. Below you will find answers to some of the most frequently-asked questions regarding the vaccine, along with answers from reliable and trustworthy sources.

Why should I get the vaccine?

Vaccination is the only way to end the pandemic. Vaccines prevent illness and disease, and save lives. COVID-19 can cause death, as well as long-term health complications. Protect yourself and those you care about.

Can I get COVID-19 from the vaccine?

The COVID-19 vaccine is not a “live vaccine”. It is impossible for you to get COVID-19 from the vaccine.

I have allergies. Can I still get the vaccine?

If you know that you have allergies to any of the ingredients in the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine or the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, or if you have previously experienced a serious allergic reaction to another vaccine, you should speak with your healthcare provider BEFORE receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

I don’t like needles. Can I choose a vaccine that is only given once?

At this point, both the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines require two doses.

What kind of side effects can I expect from the vaccine?

All vaccines may have side effects. The most common side effects for the COVID vaccine include a sore arm, fatigue, headache, muscle pain, and chills. The side effects won’t last more than a few days.

Why do I have to self-isolate if I have cold symptoms?

COVID-19 symptoms vary, and may look a lot like a cold. If you are experiencing cold or flu-like symptoms, you need to get tested. Even if you have a mild case of COVID, you could pass it on to someone who may not survive.

Why is it taking so long for the vaccine to be available to me?

Although Canada has pre-purchased vaccines from several sources, there is a huge demand for the vaccine. The government has a roll-out plan. We need to be patient. Eventually everyone who wants to, will get the vaccine. In the meantime, you can help stop the spread by washing your hands frequently, wearing a mask, and physically distancing yourself from others (stay 6 feet apart).

Are all of the COVID-19 vaccines effective?

The Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines are approved in Canada, and both are effective against COVID-19. Canada is recognized around the world for its high standards in vaccine review, approvals and monitoring.

Will the vaccines be effective for other COVID-19 variants?

Both the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccine makers state their vaccines offer protection against the new variants that have been detected so far.

If I have already had COVID-19 and recovered, do I still need to get the vaccine?

Yes. Although rare, reinfection with COVID-19 is possible.

Do I still need to wear a mask once I receive the vaccine?

Yes. A vaccinated person might still be able to spread the virus, even if they don’t feel sick. Not enough information is currently available to say when we can stop wearing masks. By wearing a mask, you are protecting yourself and others until we know more.

How do I know when it is my turn? Will someone call me?

We will do our best to let you know when it is your turn to get the vaccine, and where you need to go. Depending on where you live, it will also be announced on news (newspaper, radio & television). Please continue to check these sources and your local public health authority for the most updated information.


Last modified: Tuesday, February 2, 2021

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