What we know
Studies show that COVID-19 vaccines are effective at keeping you from getting COVID-19. Experts also think that getting a COVID-19 vaccine may help keep you from getting seriously ill even if you do get COVID-19.
COVID-19 vaccination is an important tool to help us get back to normal. Learn more about the benefits of getting vaccinated.
COVID-19 vaccines teach our immune systems how to recognize and fight the virus that causes COVID-19. It typically takes a few weeks after vaccination for the body to build protection (immunity) against the virus that causes COVID-19. That means it is possible a person could still get COVID-19 just after vaccination. This is because the vaccine has not had enough time to provide protection.
There are steps you can take to protect yourself until you can get vaccinated. Even after you get vaccinated it’s important to continue using all the tools available to help stop this pandemic as we learn more about how COVID-19 vaccines work in real-world conditions. Even after vaccination, take steps to protect yourself and others from COVID-19.
What we do not know
Although COVID-19 vaccines are effective at keeping you from getting sick, scientists are still learning how well vaccines prevent you from spreading the virus that causes COVID-19 to others, even if you do not get sick.
If you are vaccinated against COVID-19, you may still be exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19. After exposure, people can be infected with or “carry” the virus that causes COVID-19 but not feel sick or have any symptoms. Experts call this “asymptomatic infection.”
For this reason, even after vaccination, we need to continue using all the tools available to help stop this pandemic as we learn more about how COVID-19 vaccines work in real-world conditions.