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Latest Update

May 7, 2021

What are the benefits of getting vaccinated for COVID-19?

The answers on this site were developed with and vetted by the CDC

Getting immunized against COVID-19 will keep most people from getting sick. Even in a rare case where one does catch the virus, the vaccine will likely prevent you from becoming seriously ill.

Protecting yourself also protects the people around you, like those at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19 or those who can’t get vaccinated — like infants, or people with weakened immune systems from things like chemotherapy for cancer.

We are still learning how the vaccine affects whether people can still transmit COVID-19 to others. It may be possible that a vaccinated person can still carry the virus and infect others, even if that person does not appear to be sick.

That’s why, until enough Americans are vaccinated to fight off COVID-19, we will need to keep wearing masks, stay 6 feet apart from people we don’t live with, avoid crowds, and wash our hands frequently.


More things to know about vaccines (Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center)

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What can I do when I’m fully vaccinated?

People who are fully vaccinated can start to safely get back to some of the things they had stopped doing because of the pandemic. Outdoor visits and activities are generally safer than indoor activities. But people who are fully vaccinated can participate in some indoor events safely, without much risk. CDC is continuing to update guidelines as more information becomes available, so please visit their website for the latest recommendations.

Choosing Safer Activities (CDC)
How long does a COVID-19 vaccine work for?

Immunization against COVID-19 will help protect you for the near future, but it’s still not clear how long the protection will last. We will have a clearer picture of how long immunity lasts in years to come when we have collected more data. Both natural immunity and immunity from the vaccine are important ways to fight COVID-19 that experts are trying to learn more about, and places like the CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.

More about vaccine immunity (CDC)
When should I wear a mask once I’m fully vaccinated?

People who are fully vaccinated can start to safely get back to some of the things they had stopped doing because of the pandemic. In some situations, you should still protect yourself and others by wearing a mask that fits snugly against the sides of your face and doesn’t have gaps. These situations include gathering indoors with unvaccinated people from more than one other household or taking public transportation. CDC is continuing to update guidelines as more information becomes available, so please visit their website for the latest recommendations.

How to protect yourself and others (CDC)