Is the vaccine safe?
At CommonSpirit Health, safety is our priority, and we only administer vaccines that are recommended by the FDA as safe and effective.
When can I get the vaccine?
Initial supply of a COVID-19 vaccine may be limited, and federal guidelines indicate that health care workers should be among the first to get the vaccine in order to ensure health systems are able to continue to provide care through the pandemic and beyond. Additionally, first responders and employees and patients in long-term care centers and other similar facilities will also likely receive the vaccines first, when they are available. We expect that vaccines may be widely available by spring or summer 2021.
Where can I get the vaccine?
Please see above for county health information on where to sign up for the vaccine in your county.
How is the vaccine given?
The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses, administered three or four weeks apart. When a vaccine is given, information will be provided about when to get the second dose.
Why is it important to get both doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines?
It is important to complete the 2-dose series in order to optimize protection. Protection from the vaccine is not immediate. It will take one to two weeks following the second dose to be considered fully vaccinated.
What if I miss my second dose of the vaccine?
CDC guidelines allow for up to six weeks between doses to maintain vaccine efficacy. If you go beyond six weeks between doses, you do not need to re-start the series, but you should get the second dose as soon as you can.
If I have an active COVID-19 infection, can I get the vaccine before I fully recover?
No, vaccination of persons with known current infection will be deferred until the person has recovered from the acute illness (if the person had symptoms) and criteria have been met for them to discontinue quarantine.
Can I get the COVID-19 vaccine and my flu shot at the same time?
The COVID-19 vaccine should be administered alone with a minimum interval of 14 days before or after administration of any other vaccines.
Should I get the vaccine if I was exposed to someone with COVID-19?
If you were exposed to someone with COVID-19, wait to get vaccinated until your quarantine period has ended to avoid potentially exposing those around you.
Do I need to wear a mask and avoid close contact with others if I have gotten 2 doses of the vaccine?
Yes. Not enough information is currently available to say if or when CDC will stop recommending that people wear masks and avoid close contact with others to help prevent the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19.
Experts need to understand more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide in real-world conditions before making that decision. Other factors, including how many people get vaccinated and how the virus is spreading in communities, will also affect this decision. We also don’t yet know whether getting a COVID-19 vaccine will prevent you from spreading the virus that causes COVID-19 to other people, even if you don’t get sick yourself. CDC will continue to update this page as we learn more.
It takes time for your body to build protection after any vaccination. COVID-19 vaccines that require 2 shots may not protect you until a week or two after your second shot.
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 help stop this pandemic. To protect yourself and others, follow these recommendations:
- Wear a mask over your nose and mouth
- Stay at least 6 feet away from others
- Avoid crowds
- Avoid poorly ventilated spaces
- Wash your hands often
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.
Where can I get more information about the vaccine?
To learn more about COVID-19 vaccines, Frequently Asked Questions are available on the CDC website and FDA website.
Also visit the DHHS website for local information in Nebraska, or the IDPH website for information in Iowa.