The development and availability of COVID-19 vaccines are important to everyone. Ensuring as many people as possible are vaccinated is an integral part of our efforts to eradicate the pandemic in our community. COVID-19 vaccines will help to decrease the number of deaths and serious disease, reduce the extra burden COVID-19 is having on people already facing disparities, help our community return to normal, and increase the opportunity to improve the health and well-being of all Southern Nevadans.
The COVID-19 vaccines were developed according the rigorous standards of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Many thousands of people participated in the clinical trials to ensure the vaccines were safe and effective before being offered to the public. The clinical trials included three phases.
- Phase I
Small volunteer group to determine initial safety and potential side effects
- Phase II
Larger volunteer group to determine efficacy and dosage
- Phase III
Very large volunteer group where a portion of the participants receive the vaccine, and the other portion get the placebo to determine efficacy and side effects.
What ingredients are used in the COVID-19 vaccine?
The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines both contain mRNA, as well as lipids to ensure safe delivery of the mRNA that will initiate an immune response. Although FDA approved adjuvants (aluminum salts) and preservatives (ethlymercury) have a history of safe use in vaccines, they were not used by Pfizer and Moderna in this vaccine technology. The Janssen vaccine (Johnson & Johnson) is a viral vector vaccine. It contains a different harmless virus and not the one that causes COVID-19. The vaccine triggers your immune system to begin producing antibodies and activating other immune cells to fight what it thinks is the infection.
When can I get vaccinated?
Everyone 12 and older is eligible to be vaccinated. Visit the Vaccine Distribution page to find a vaccination clinic and book an appointment.
What are the benefits of getting the COVID-19 vaccine?
Getting the vaccine will help keep you from getting COVID-19. The vaccines have been carefully evaluated, and data from the COVID-19 clinical trials indicate that all three authorized vaccines are safe, effective, and highly effective at preventing severe illness and hospitalizations from COVID-19. The COVID-19 vaccine has undergone the same level of review as the vaccines for smallpox, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, meningitis, and more.
More information about the Benefits of Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine is available on the CDC website.
Can I get COVID-19 from the vaccine?
You cannot get the virus that causes COVID-19 from the vaccine. After getting vaccinated, you may have an immune response to the vaccine. This process can cause symptoms such as fever, chills and body aches. These symptoms are normal and a sign that your body is building immunity. More information about how COVID-19 vaccines work is available on the CDC website.