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Why should I get the COVID-19 vaccine?

COVID-19 can cause serious illness or even death. There is no way to know how COVID-19 will affect you, and if you get sick, you could spread the disease to friends, family, and others around you. All COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the United States have been shown to be highly effective at preventing COVID-19. Even if you still get infected after you get vaccinated, the vaccine may prevent serious illness.

Is there a fee to receive the COVID-19 vaccine?

No. The federal government is providing the vaccine free of charge to all people living in the United States. However, your vaccination provider may bill your insurance company, Medicaid, or Medicare for an administration fee. This administration fee will not be an out-of-pocket expense for you.

Do I have to have insurance to receive the COVID-19 vaccine?

No. Health insurance is not required to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. If you have health insurance, you will be asked to provide your insurance information to cover an administration fee. This administration fee will not be an out-of-pocket expense for you. 

Can the vaccine give me COVID-19?

No. The vaccine does not cause COVID-19. None of the approved COVID-19 vaccines contain the virus that causes COVI-19. It does take a few weeks after the vaccination for your body to build up antibodies to protect you from the virus. That means it is possible you could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after getting the vaccine and still get sick. 

Will the shot hurt or make me sick?

Some people might get sore muscles, feel tired, or have a mild fever after getting the vaccine. These reactions mean the vaccine is working to help teach your body how to fight COVID-19 if you are exposed. For most people, these side effects will last no longer than a few days. If you have any concerns, call your doctor or nurse. 

Why do I need two COVID-19 vaccine shots?

Some COVID-19 vaccines need two shots. The first shot gets your body ready. If you are told you need two shots, make sure that you get your second shot at the time you are told, to make sure you have full protection. 

Should I get vaccinated if I already have COVID-19?

Yes. You should still be vaccinated because you can become infected more than once. Although you may have some short-term natural protection (known as immunity) after recovering from COVID-19, we don't know how long this protection will last. Vaccination is the best protection, and it is safe. People who get COVID-19 can have serious illnesses, and some have terrible symptoms that continue for months. If you have had COVID-19, ask your doctor, nurse, or clinic when you should be vaccinated. 

Do I still need to wear a mask and socially distance after getting the vaccine?

Yes. While experts learn more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide under real-life conditions, it will be important for everyone to continue using all the tools available to us to help stop this pandemic, like wearing a mask over your nose and mouth, washing your hands often, and staying at least 6 feet away from people who don't live with you. Together, COVID-19 vaccination and following CDC's recommendations for how to protect yourself and others will offer the best protection from getting and spreading COVID-19.