As the world continues to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic, there is finally a light at the end of the tunnel as two vaccines have been approved for use throughout the USA and Canada. These are the vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna, two of the leading healthcare giants in North America.
There have been many questions about these vaccines, and lots of misinformation about these vaccines exist. If you want to learn more about specifics, be sure to visit this CoronaVirus Vaccine safety blog content by HealthTap. In an effort to help you understand a little more about the Covid-19 vaccines, this article is going to cover everything you need to know about them.
How Do They Work?
In general, most vaccines work by introducing a component of a virus, or a weakened version into a person’s body. Despite this vaccine and it’s contents not actually being the disease, your body responds to it as if it is. Your body will recognize the organism or bacteria as a foreign body and look to destroy it. Once it has done so, it will remember the germ and how to destroy it.
So if you ever get infected with the actual virus, your body will already know how to fight it off quickly and effectively. While the ultimate idea of these Covid-19 vaccines is the same (develop immunity without having to actually be infected by the virus), the way it accomplishes this goal is different.
Instead of introducing a component of the virus or live bacteria into the body, these Covid-19 vaccines do not contain any component of the virus at all. Instead, they have a small piece of the genetic code of the virus. This mRNA (messenger RNA) provides your cells with the instructions on how to build the spike protein of the virus. As a result, your body will know how to stop the virus from being able to attach itself to your cells, and thus be unable to infect you.
In addition to how they work, there are other similarities between the two available Covid-19 vaccines. They each are equally as effective as each other, and feature many of the same ingredients, with the mRNA doing most of the work.
Even the side effects such as fatigue, soreness at the injection point, and muscle pain are similar. Of course, there are some differences between the two. Most notably is the temperature at which they are stored. While both vaccines need to be frozen, there is a large gap between the two. While the Moderna vaccine only needs to be kept at -20 degrees celsius, the Pfizer vaccine needs to be kept at a freezing temperature of -70 degrees celsius.
Also, the ages of those that can be vaccinated differ between the two. The Pfizer vaccine has been authorized for use on anyone over 16, while the Moderna vaccine is reserved for those over 18.
Are They Safe?
Yes, both of the vaccines are safe. They have been tested in numerous clinical trials and have been proven effective. While there are some small side effects (such as the ones we mentioned earlier), they are short-term and in-line with other vaccines.
Also, because of how this vaccine works in your body, there is no chance of the vaccine actually giving you the Covid-19 virus. Of course, there is also the potential for more serious side effects, but these are generally reserved for those with preexisting conditions of some kind. If you are at all worried about side effects, be sure to speak to a medical professional before getting the vaccine to see if you are at risk.
But for a large majority of people, you have nothing to worry about as the vaccine has been widely tested and deemed safe.
When Can I Get Vaccinated and What Will it Cost?
When you are able to get vaccinated will depend on who you are. Healthcare workers who are at risk of being exposed to Covid-19 are generally the first to get the vaccine, followed by those in long-term care facilities, people at a high-risk for Covid-19 due to other medical conditions, and then senior citizens. Everyone else will follow once those at risk have been given vaccines.
It is yet to be determined exactly when the general public will begin getting the vaccine, but you can be sure it will be announced in a widespread manner once it has been figured out. As for cost, there will thankfully be no direct cost to get the vaccine. Hundreds of millions of doses were purchased by the USA alone, and the federal government won’t require individuals to pay for the vaccines.
In conclusion, we hope that this article has been able to help you learn and understand a little more about both the Pfizer and Moderna Covid-19 vaccines.