There have been many difficult decisions that have had to been made over the last few months as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic, the newest being whether or not to get the coronavirus vaccine. However, it may not be as difficult a decision as you think!!
Below are some answers to frequently asked questions:
Is it safe for cancer patients to receive the vaccine?
Yes – it is currently recommended in patients with cancer to help reduce the risk of infection with COVID-19, as long as the patients do not have any contraindications.
What is a contraindication?
A contraindication is a severe reason why a vaccine should not be administered. The most common contraindication with vaccines in general are severe allergic reactions to any of the ingredients. If you have ever had an allergic reaction to a vaccine in the past, talk with your doctor before receiving the vaccine.
Will the vaccine make me sick with COVID?
No, neither of the authorized vaccines contain live viruses which means it cannot give you the Coronavirus. You may experience COVID-like symptoms (mild fatigue and/or fever) but this is only expected to last a few days.
What is the vaccine made with, if not a live virus?
Both vaccine available to the public are mRNA vaccines. mRNA vaccines carry genetic materials that teach our cells how to make “spike proteins” which are found on the surfaces of the SAR-CoV-2 virus. These proteins help trigger immune responses inside our bodies to help protect us from getting infect. mRNA from the vaccine never enters the nucleus of the cell and does not affect or interact with a person’s DNA.
These vaccines came out very fast—are they safe?
Both COVID-19 vaccines, like all other vaccines, were tested rigorously for safety before being authorized for use in the US. While mRNA technology is new, it is not unknown as it has been studied for decades.
Can I receive a vaccine at a CSNF office?
At this time, we do not have any vaccines available at our clinics for patients or staff. However, we have complied a list of places eligible people can receive the vaccine at this time. Please see a member of our team for more information.
“As a physician, I feel that it is my duty to lead our community by example and receive the COVID-19 vaccination. My partners and I were proud to be among the first people to become vaccinated, and we hope that our actions inspire others to do the same. I’m looking forward to a time in the future where I can see my patient’s smiling faces without the barrier of a mask (but for now- keep them on!)” – Dr. Ilicia Shugarman
“My grandfather recently passed away from COVID-19, alone in the hospital. Vaccination is one of the tools available to us to fight against this pandemic. I want to do everything in my power to prevent the spread of COVID in my community, so that no more families have to experience what mine did. Building herd immunity through vaccines is the best way to protect our families, friends, and patients.” – MaryAlice Anderson, PharmD