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FDA Says "Do Not" Make These Vaccine Mistakes

Educate yourself about the vaccine with this essential FDA advice.
FACT CHECKED BY Emilia Paluszek
Young woman taking a vaccine from her doctor.

The COVID-19 vaccines were developed so quickly, it's natural to wonder if they are safe and effective, despite what a Dr. Fauci or other expert says. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves the shots and says they are, in fact, safe and effective—and urges you to get yours. "For a community to be fully protected, most community members need to get the vaccine," they say. "Getting vaccinated against COVID-19 will help protect you from COVID-19, and it may also protect the people around you." That said, there are a few things you should know as you make your decision. Read on for a list of things you should not do—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus

1

The FDA Says Don't Think the Rare Risk Outweighs the Big Reward

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It does. "All three FDA-authorized vaccines are effective in preventing hospitalization and deaths from COVID-19 and may be given to any person eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine," says the FDA. "The FDA carefully evaluated and analyzed the safety and effectiveness data for all COVID-19 vaccines and determined that all of the available data for each vaccine provides clear evidence that the known and potential benefits outweigh the known and potential risks of each vaccine's use."

2

Don't Think the Vaccine Won't Protect You From the Variants, Says FDA

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"While each FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccine is slightly different, available information suggests that the authorized vaccines remain effective in protecting the American public against currently circulating strains of COVID-19," says the FDA. "We are already talking with vaccine manufacturers about these new strains and how to quickly and safely make any changes that may be needed in the future."

3

Don't Stop Your Public Safety Measures After Vaccination, Says FDA

Two women with protective face masks talking on the city street in safe distance.
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"Some variants spread more easily than others," says the FDA. "To help slow the spread of COVID-19, get a COVID-19 vaccine when it is available to you. Other ways to slow the spread include:

  • Wearing a mask
  • Keeping 6 feet apart from others who don't live with you
  • Avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated indoor spaces
  • Washing your hands often with soap and water (use hand sanitizer if soap and water aren't available)"

4

Don't Worry About the COVID-19 Vaccines Being Unsafe, Says FDA

Scientist in laboratory studying and analyzing scientific sample of Coronavirus monoclonal antibodies to produce drug treatment for COVID-19.
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They are, says the FDA. "The FDA evaluated data from clinical studies that included tens of thousands of people. The data from these studies clearly show that the known and potential benefits of the FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines greatly outweigh the known and potential risks," says the agency. "Millions of doses of FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines have been given to people all around the country. Serious adverse events following vaccination are very rare. No serious, life-threatening allergic reactions occurred in clinical study participants, however, after getting a COVID-19 vaccine in their community, a few people had anaphylaxis (a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction that happens within seconds or minutes of exposure to an allergen). Because of this remote chance of severe allergic reaction, health care providers may ask you to stay at the place where you received a vaccine for monitoring for 15 to 30 minutes."

5

Don't Think People are Having a Ton of Adverse Reactions, Says FDA

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They aren't. "To date the FDA and other government agencies have not identified any new safety signals that raise questions about the risks and benefits of COVID-19 vaccines. A safety signal is information from one or more sources, such as federal surveillance programs, that suggests an adverse event may potentially be related to a vaccine or medicine and that further evaluation through additional studies or close monitoring may be needed," says the agency.  So get vaccinated when it becomes available to you, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.