Myth: Getting the COVID-19 vaccine means no more masks and other coronavirus precautions.
Fact: People who get vaccinated against COVID-19 still need to maintain infection prevention precautions recommended by the World Health Organisation, health experts and authorities. This means one still has to keep wearing face masks in public, maintain physical distance and hand washing. Vaccines do not stop the coronavirus from entering your body; they only prevent you from developing moderate to severe COVID-19. The length of immunity of vaccinated people is not yet known. It’s also not yet clear whether vaccination stops transmission of the coronavirus to other people.
Myth: Getting the COVID-19 vaccine gives you COVID-19
Fact: COVID-19 vaccines cannot and will not give you COVID-19. The vaccines trigger your immune response by instructing your cells to reproduce a protein that is part of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, helping your body recognize and fight the virus, if it comes along. The COVID-19 vaccine does not contain the SARS-Co-2 virus, so you cannot get COVID-19 from the vaccine. The protein that helps your immune system recognize and fight the virus does not cause any infection.
Myth: COVID-19 vaccines have deadly side effects
Fact: While the COVID-19 vaccine can have side effects, they are mostly short term and not serious or dangerous. According to the vaccine developers, some people experience pain where they were injected; body aches; headaches or fever, lasting for a day or two. These are signs that the vaccine is working to stimulate the immune system, but if the symptoms persist beyond two days, you are advised to seek medical help.
Myth: Now that we have vaccines, the pandemic will be over very soon
Fact: While the several vaccines that have been developed present a great opportunity to end the COVID-19 pandemic, experts say this might take years due to the complexity of the global vaccine rollout.
A little over 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses had been administered worldwide by February 3, according to the Council for Foreign Relations. At the current rate, it will take years for enough of the global population to be vaccinated to a point where cases will start to fall.
Some experts believe 70% of the population will have to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity – the point at which the disease is no longer likely to spread.
Vaccine manufacturers have limited capacity to produce in the face of huge global demand, so the vaccines are being distributed in phases.
While governments, vaccine developers, donors and other multilateral institutions work towards broad vaccine availability and distribution, the recommended measures to slow the spread of COVID-19 – wearing masks, physical distancing and washing hands – remain vital.- Zimfact