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COVID-19 vaccines are finally being distributed in DC and around the world. Thanks to the high rate of vaccinations, the CDC is starting to loosen mask guidance.

However, it can be hard to find quality information about COVID-19 vaccines. There’s a lot of misinformation out there about what the vaccine is, does, and so on. 

To help out, we’ve put together some facts about the vaccine and the benefits of getting it below.

How Many COVID-19 Vaccines Are There?

There are three COVID-19 vaccines:

  • Pfizer-BioNTech (two doses, at least 21 days apart)
  • Moderna (two doses, each one month apart)
  • Johnson & Johnson/Janssen (single dose)

The Johnson & Johnson/Janssen was paused, but the CDC and FDA recently announced it was safe to restart again. They determined this after meeting twice with the independent Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), during which they found that the benefits of getting this vaccine far outweigh the risks.

Still, you can opt for the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines if you’d like.

Regardless of which vaccine you receive, the COVID-19 vaccine is effective at preventing you from getting sick. You may experience side effects, but those are normal and to be expected for most people.

How Many People in Washington, DC Have Been Vaccinated?

Our World In Data reports that just over 381,000 DC residents have received at least one dose of the two-dose vaccines. That’s around 55.1% of the DC population.

About 41.4% of the DC population (286,901) is now fully vaccinated — ahead of the US average of 37.7%. These individuals can return to most normal activities as long as they follow all applicable laws. More on that next.

Can I Return to Normal Activities After Vaccination?

Once you are fully vaccinated, the CDC says you can resume normal activities without a mask or social distancing except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance. 

The CDC says you are considered fully vaccinated after you receive both doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines, or after the single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. 

As for travel, fully vaccinated individuals do not need to test before or after travel within the US, nor do they need to self-quarantine after travel within the US. International travel is not as clear, though. You must understand your destination’s laws, and you must show a negative test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before boarding an international flight to the United States. You should get tested 3-5 days after international travel, but you do not need to self-quarantine after getting back to the US.

At VMT Home Health, the health and safety of our patients and their families is of the utmost importance. We will continue to follow the CDC’s guidance for staying safe to ensure our patients and their families also are safe and healthy. Contact us to learn more.

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