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Yes. The CDC recommends that you get vaccinated even if you have already had COVID-19 because you can catch it more than once. While you may have some short-term antibody protection after recovering from COVID-19, we don’t know how long this protection lasts.
Please see CDC's guidance for When You've Been Fully Vaccinated.
If you are fully vaccinated (two weeks since your final dose), you do not have to quarantine after being in close contact with someone who has COVID-19. You must have also been vaccinated within the last three months and show no symptoms.
When You've Been Fully Vaccinated (CDC)
Yes. The vaccine was highly effective in studies but not 100% effective. Current information suggests it is possible that someone who has been vaccinated against COVID-19 may still have a mild or asymptomatic infection or be able to spread the virus to others. Until we know more, it is important to continue taking precautions, like wearing masks and practicing physical distancing, even after you have been vaccinated.
The COVID vaccines that are currently available both require two doses of the vaccine. Even after receiving your second dose, you will not be immediately protected from COVID-19. Studies show that it takes about one to two weeks after your last dose for your body to be able to protect itself against illness.
Current information suggests it is possible that someone who has been vaccinated against COVID-19 may still have a mild or asymptomatic infection or spread the virus to others so it is important to continue taking precautions. Continue wearing masks and practicing physical distancing until it is clear that it is safe to stop.
If you received a Pfizer or Moderna vaccine for your first dose, it is very important to get both doses of the vaccine so that your body develops enough antibodies to fight the COVID-19 virus if you get infected in the future.
It is also very important that you receive the second dose of your COVID-19 vaccine on time. The time frame between the vaccine’s first and second dose is determined by the companies producing the vaccine to maximize your body’s ability to create antibodies against the virus. Many vaccinators will go ahead and schedule your appointment for your second dose while making your first appointment or during your appointment.
Getting more than one dose for a vaccine is not unusual. In fact, it’s the norm. Many routine vaccines require more than one dose for maximum protection.
We don’t know yet – researchers will continue to collect data on study participants to determine if immunity decreases over time and if repeat vaccination is necessary.
If you have symptoms shortly after receiving the vaccine, these symptoms do not mean you have gotten COVID-19 from the vaccine. You may have some side effects, which are normal signs that your body is building protection. These side effects may feel like flu and may even affect your ability to do daily activities, but they should go away in a few days. For more information about symptoms after receiving the vaccine you can view the CDC’s What to Expect after Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine fact sheet.
This term describes when enough people have protection - either because they’ve already had the disease or they’ve been vaccinated - it is unlikely a virus or bacteria can spread between people in a community and cause outbreaks of disease.
Public health experts are still learning about what percentage of a community would need to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity against COVID-19. The percentage needed to reach herd immunity varies by disease.