FAQs on Vaccines for COVID-19
What is a vaccine?
A vaccine is a biological substance that is administered to protect against specific diseases by inducing immunity against those diseases.
How does a vaccine protect us from getting the disease?
Once the component of the vaccine enters our body, it trains and prepares our immune system to recognize and fight against viruses and bacteria. If our body comes across those disease-causing agents later in our life, the immune system will recognize them and destroy them quickly to prevent the disease.
What are the current vaccines approved by FDA for Emergency Use Authorization(EUA) for COVID-19?
Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine (Also approved by WHO as Emergency Use Listing) and Moderna COVID-19 vaccine
What are other vaccines for COVID-19 in our way?
Some of the vaccines in under phase 3 clinical trials are:
- AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine
- Janssen’s COVID-19 vaccine
- Novavax’s COVID-19 vaccine
Will I get the COVID-19 from the vaccine itself?
No. Vaccines use inactivated or weakened viruses or viral products(RNA/DNA/Protein/Vector based) which can not cause COVID-19 itself.
Will I have side effects following vaccination?
Yes. Pain and swelling at the site of injection, fever, chills, tiredness, and headaches are commonly seen. Very rare but life-threatening severe allergic reactions may occur in some, which must be managed immediately.
Will the current vaccines also work for the new and changing strains of SARS-CoV-2?
This is very early to answer this question. It may work, it may not. More research is needed to confirm it. However, vaccines generally provide a broader range of protection against the illness for which it is prepared for.
I have been infected with COVID-19. Should I get vaccinated?
Yes. The reinfection can happen and the number of days of protection from the immunity after the first infection is still unknown.
Should I continue the safety measures of using masks, hand hygiene, and physical distancing after vaccinations too?
Yes. It takes some days to weeks for the vaccines to train the immune system and the question for long term protection with the help of vaccines is yet to be answered
About COVISHIELD vaccine in Nepal
COVISHIELD, vaccine Co-developed by the University of Oxford and British-Swedish company AstraZeneca and known as Covishield in India. It is given in 2 doses, the second dose is given between 4 to 12 weeks. This vaccine is stored at 2 to 8 C, prepared from a weakened version of a common cold virus (known as an adenovirus) from chimpanzees. It has been modified to look more like coronavirus - although it can't cause COVID-19 illness. Many pieces of evidence yet to be established after large-scale research.
10. How Safe is this Covidsheild?
It is safe vaccine, apart from some minor expected side effects like, fever and mild body pain for few days for some, one can use safely. For more details you can contact us or, ask your nearest vaccination centers.
11. How can i get the vaccine?
Nepal government have planned to vaccinate, front line workers at first which is almost complete. Other professionals who works directly in contact with general public has been vaccinated eg. bankers, security force. At present, government is vaccinating old age group or above 65 years old and 55 years old. One has to carry photo ID proof issued by government (citizenship certificate, voter's ID, passport, licence) or ward recommendation letter to receive vaccine from nearest vaccine center.
Dr.Yagya Prasad Timalsina