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The COVID-19 vaccine is in Idaho. Here's what you need to know

COVID-19 vaccine tray
Posted at 3:54 PM, Jan 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-17 15:39:36-05

IDAHO — The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare (IDHW) has released a website with information on the COVID-19 vaccine. The website says all dates are subject to change and vaccine providers are limited at this time.

Key dates and deadlines (subject to change)

  • December-Present: Healthcare personnel, home care providers, emergency medical services, long-term care facility residents and staff, dentists, pharmacists, public health and emergency management response workers
  • January 12-January 31: First responders, Pre-K through 12th-grade teachers and staff, childcare staff and Correctional and detention facility staff
  • February 1: Idahoans 65 years and older
  • Late February to Early March (Final date TBD): Homeless shelter residents, food and agriculture workers, Idaho National Guard, manufacturing, public transit and U.S. Postal Service workers
  • Early April: Food and agriculture workers, USDA processing plant inspectors, grocery and convenience store workers, food pantry employees, Idaho National Guard if not included earlier, manufacturing, public transit and U.S. Postal Service workers
  • Late April: Other essential workers
  • May: General public

Point of Contact Numbers for COVID-19 Vaccine Questions

What to expect at your vaccine appointment:

  • You will receive a vaccination card that says which COVID-19 vaccine you were given as well as the date and location it was administered.
  • You should also receive a fact sheet with additional information about the COVID-19 vaccine you are getting. There are fact sheets for each COVID-19 vaccine with information about the risks and benefits of that particular vaccine.
  • Allow time to stay at the vaccination site for 15-30 minutes after getting vaccinated to make sure you don’t have a reaction that needs medical attention.

What to expect after you get vaccinated:

  • COVID-19 vaccines may cause mild to moderate reactions, including pain or swelling at the injection site, muscle pain, headaches, and mild to moderate fevers. These are normal signs the body is producing an immune response. You may report adverse events following vaccination at https://vaers.hhs.gov/.
  • It takes time to build protection and immunity after getting a vaccine. A person is considered immune two weeks after receiving the second dose of COVID-19 vaccine.
  • If the vaccine you’re getting requires two doses, you should get both doses unless a healthcare provider or doctor tells you not to.
  • If you have not received 2 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine and you have symptoms of COVID-19, you should get tested.
  • While scientists learn more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide under real-life conditions, it is up to everyone, including vaccinated people, to continue to do all the other measures to help stop this pandemic: wear a mask, stay 6 feet apart from people who don’t live in your home, wash your hands often, and stay home when you’re sick.

Idaho News 6 is getting lots of questions about the vaccine and we are working on getting you answers.

Should I still wear a mask?

Yes, people should still wear a mask. There is not enough information available yet to determine when the Centers for Disease Control will stop recommending the public wear masks.

How long will the vaccine protect me?

It could take several months until researchers know how long people who received the vaccine are protected.

Can a vaccinated person pass the virus on to other people?

Yes. As with the flu shot, sometimes happens to people, though at much lower rates than an unvaccinated person.

If my first vaccine is from Pfizer, does my second vaccine need to be from Pfizer too? Or can it be from Moderna?

If you receive one dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, you should receive a second dose of this same vaccine 21 days later to complete the vaccination series, says the FDA.

What are the side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine?

According to the CDC, below are the common side effects due to the coronavirus vaccine:

On the arm where you got the shot:

  • pain
  • swelling

Throughout the rest of your body:

  • fever
  • chills
  • tiredness
  • headache

If someone already had COVID-19, do they need the vaccine?

According to the CDC, currently, there isn't enough information available to say for how long after infection or if someone is protected from getting COVID-19 again. Early evidence shows natural immunity may not last very long.

Do we need the vaccine if we are social distancing and wearing masks?

The CDC says stopping a pandemic requires using all the tools available.

“Vaccines work with your immune system so your body will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed,” the CDC says on its website. “Other steps, like covering your mouth and nose with a mask and staying at least 6 feet away from others, help reduce your chance of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others.”