You see it everywhere: “Do your part to stop the spread and get the COVID-19 vaccine!” Although our healthcare officials keep communicating this message, you may still have some lingering questions that are holding you back. Have no fear! We sat down with our Compliance Manager, Jodi Bunde, and resourced the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to answer some common questions regarding the vaccine.
*Please note that while the vaccine is not currently mandated, it is still highly encouraged that you receive it to protect yourself, your loved ones, and those you care for.
Q: First thing first: Where do I get the vaccine?
A: As a GrapeTree healthcare professional, we recommend that you first give your Staffing Specialist a call! Your Specialist will be able to let you know if any of the healthcare facilities you work with offer the vaccine. Another option is to visit VaccineFinder, which is an online service where users can search for locations that offer vaccinations. You’re able to filter by which brand of vaccination you’d like to receive, input your zip code, and then search within a certain radius. Eligibility requirements do vary by state, so we recommend that you check with your local health department to confirm that you’re currently eligible to receive the vaccine!
Q: I already had COVID-19 and recovered. Should I still get the vaccine?
A: Even if you already had the virus, it is still recommended that you receive the vaccine as reinfection is possible and experts don’t currently know how long someone is protected from getting sick again. According to the CDC, you should wait until 90 days after your COVID diagnosis to receive the vaccine. Both natural immunity and vaccine-induced immunity are important for public safety!
Q: Is the COVID-19 vaccine safe?
A: According to the CDC, all the COVID-19 vaccines being used have gone through rigorous studies to ensure they are as safe and effective as possible. Millions of people in the U.S. have received COVID-19 vaccines, and these vaccines have undergone the most intensive safety monitoring in U.S. history.
Q: Are there side effects to the vaccine?
A: You may have some side effects, which are normal signs that your body is building protection. Common side effects include pain and swelling on the arm where you received the shot, fever, chills, tiredness, and headache. These side effects may affect your ability to do daily activities, but they should go away in a few days. The CDC provides helpful tips in reducing any pain or discomfort you may experience!
Q: Can the vaccine make me sick with COVID-19?
A: No. None of the COVID-19 vaccines contain the live virus that causes COVID-19.
Q: Will a COVID-19 vaccination protect me from getting sick with COVID-19?
A: All COVID-19 vaccines in the U.S. have been shown to be highly effective in preventing COVID-19. The vaccinations work by teaching your immune system to recognize and fight the virus. Experts believe that getting a COVID-19 vaccine may keep you from getting seriously ill even if you do get COVID-19 and could also protect people around you, particularly those at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
Q: If I get the vaccine, do I need to take anything with me that proves I work for GrapeTree?
A: You sure do! Please bring your verification of employment (found in the Workforce Portal library), your GrapeTree name badge, and another form of identification such as your driver’s license, passport, or a student ID.
Q: If I get the vaccine, how do I ensure GrapeTree has it on file?
A: Great question! If you are a healthcare professional working for GrapeTree, please send a photo of your vaccination card to email@example.com.
As an additional resource, watch this short video of Lori Porter, Co-Founder and CEO of the National Association of Healthcare Assistants (NAHCA), where she discusses her personal journey and thoughts on the COVID-19 vaccine and if she thinks nursing assistants should receive the vaccine as well.
In addition to receiving one of the three vaccines, a healthy immune system is key to preventing infection and disease, including COVID-19. Several studies have shown that micronutrients such as vitamins C, D and Zinc have been known to boost the immune system and reduce the risk of respiratory infection. These nutrients have been prescribed and advised by healthcare professionals and can be obtained from diets and dietary supplements, taken alone, or as part of a multi-nutrient or multivitamin tablet. If you decide that you want to try a supplement, speak with your healthcare provider first, as some supplements may interact with certain medications or are not recommended for some people.
If you have any further questions regarding the vaccine, please contact your counties Department of Public Health or GrapeTree Compliance Manager, Jodi Bunde, at (712) 336-0800 ext. 1147.
Find your counties Department of Public Health below.