Fact Check: Four COVID-19 Vaccine Misconceptions

Please note: This video was filmed in March 2021. At this time, Johnson & Johnson is no longer being offered at many vaccine sites, per CDC and FDA guidance. Learn more on the CDC website.

Right now, there’s a lot of misinformation about the COVID-19 vaccines and it’s made a lot of people wary about getting one. This is a problem because if enough people opt out of getting the vaccine, the pandemic will extend even longer with more sickness and death.

So let’s start with setting the record straight: the vaccines are safe. We understand there’s a lot of information floating out there, which makes it difficult to know what’s true and what’s false. Let’s fact check some of the most common misconceptions:

Myth #1: The COVID-19 vaccine isn’t safe.

Because of how quickly the vaccines were developed, many people are concerned that there was not adequate research and testing. Rest assured: the vaccines were created using standard safety and testing protocols. One of the reasons COVID-19 vaccines are available so quickly is thanks to a collective effort to develop, produce and distribute the vaccines. The vaccines still went through the necessary clinical trials and two are currently available through emergency use authorization through the Food & Drug Administration.

Myth #2: I will get COVID-19 from the vaccine.

No, you cannot get COVID-19 from the vaccines. The vaccines help our bodies develop immunity to the virus without us having to get the illness by creating antibodies that fight the virus.

Myth #3: COVID-19 vaccines cause infertility or miscarriage.

There isn’t any data to suggest COVID-19 vaccines impact future fertility or would harm a developing or breastfeeding baby. However, these areas have not yet been fully studied. Although pregnant patients were not included in initial vaccine research, expert groups including Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG), and Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM), recommend COVID vaccines should be made available to both pregnant and lactating patients.

Myth #4: There are extreme side effects after getting the vaccine.

Although some people will experience symptoms after getting the vaccine, these are typically mild and similar to what you might experience after receiving other vaccines. The most common reactions are headaches, arm pain, body aches, chills or fever. These symptoms may last a few hours to a few days. Remember – you can’t get COVID-19 from the vaccine. It does not contain live virus.

Getting the vaccine can help keep you – and those around you – from becoming sick. As more people are vaccinated, we should begin to see less people getting sick from the virus and decreased hospitalizations. The vaccine can help us end the COVID-19 pandemic with fewer lives lost, especially in the most at-risk populations including older adults, individuals who are immunocompromised, and people of color.

Get information about COVID-19 and the vaccine from a reputable source. Your state’s department of health website is a great resource to find the latest information. Here are ones for our area:

Main Line Health is another great resource to get information about COVID-19. We have information about how to stay healthy and safe during the pandemic as well as what you need to know about testing and treatment. Visit our website to learn more or call 866-225-5654.

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