In the race to get people vaccinated against COVID-19, Novant Health has administered more than 10,000 doses of the vaccine. The questions multiply as the number of people who qualify increases and curiosity for the new variants is at a peak.
Here are the answers to the latest round of questions from readers of Health News for Latinos. Do you have any questions? Send it to us through the comment function that appears at the end of the news. Due to the large volume of questions, we will answer the most common ones in future articles, so stay tuned to our site and check out the COVID-19 section.
How concerning is it that the vaccine of COVID-19 may be less effective with the newer variants of COVID-19 that we are hearing about?
There is an idea that current vaccines may not be as effective against newer variants. That may be true over time, but we don’t know for sure at this point. The good news is that COVID-19 vaccines continue to provide significant protection against the variants we are currently aware of.
What we know about flu vaccination is that while the efficacy of a given vaccine is important, the number of people who get vaccinated is just as important, if not more. Let’s say the flu vaccine is 40% effective in a given year. It may seem small, but if all eligible people get vaccinated against influenza, there would be almost no mortality from the disease.
COVID-19 vaccines are currently 95% effective. That is extraordinary. But even if it was only 75% effective, it would still be very effective. Therefore, we cannot only consider the effectiveness of a vaccine, since it often comes down to the number of people who decide to get vaccinated. Lower efficacy can be overcome if everyone gets vaccinated. That is why it is up to us to continue to wear masks, be socially distant, wash our hands, and get vaccinated as soon as we can.
The instructions say I must not take acetaminophen before vaccination, but I have chronic pain and have been prescribed hydrocodone. How far in advance of the appointment should I stop taking it?
If you take anti-inflammatories regularly, consult your doctor before stopping this medicine.
If I received the first dose from a health department, but couldn’t schedule a second dose through them, can I get the second dose from a different healthcare provider?
Yes, there is no problem getting the vaccine in different places. However, it is essential that the type of vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna) is the same. The most convenient place to get the vaccine is acceptable.
How long should I wait to take acetaminophen or ibuprofen after getting the vaccine?
Although it is not recommended to take something like acetaminophen before your COVID-19 injection, it is acceptable to take it after the vaccine has been administered.
My second shot is scheduled prior to the 21-day schedule that Pfizer has indicated. Is it okay to put it on the daya 20?
Yes, the recommended time frame for the Pfizer vaccine is 17-23 days. Having said that, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention currently states that It is not necessary to restart the vaccine series even if the second dose is given more than three weeks (Pfizer) or more than four weeks (Moderna) after the first dose.
Should I get the second dose of the vaccine in the same arm as the first?
It does not matter which arm you get the vaccine in. It is a personal choice.
Should I get tested for COVID-19 before getting your vaccine?
No. Testing before receiving the vaccine is not recommended. However, if you have symptoms of COVID-19, are in quarantine or have a pending COVID-19 test result, we ask that you do not go to the vaccination site. Please contact your GP and reschedule your vaccination when you have no symptoms.
Curious about when you can get the COVID-19 vaccine? Answer a few quick questions and pre-register here.
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