Dental Health Provider Compliance

Why YOU should consider getting a COVID-19 vaccine and answers to FAQs

Why YOU should consider getting a COVID-19 vaccine and answers to FAQs

While the COVID-19 vaccination for our Dental Whale and DWPG team members is not a requirement and is completely voluntary, the Dental Whale Compliance Department and your Practice Group leadership are committed to keeping you informed and updated on the vaccine and the latest information on its distribution. Learn more about the benefits of the COVID-19 vaccine in this quick educational Q and A document.

What is an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine?

  • mRNA is messenger RNA, genetic material that teaches our cells how to make proteins
  • The vaccine contains a small piece of the virus’s mRNA that instructs cells in the body to make the virus’s distinctive “spike” protein. When a person receives this vaccine, their body produces copies of the spike protein, which does not cause disease, but triggers the immune system to learn to react defensively. The body is said to produce an immune response against SARS-CoV-2. According to the CDC, “ the COVID-19 vaccination works by teaching your immune system how to recognize and fight the virus that causes COVID-19, and this protects you from getting sick with COVID-19.”
  • The COVID19 vaccine is NOT a live virus.

Is the mRNA vaccine a novel type of vaccination?

  • While COVID-19 vaccines are the first mRNA vaccines to be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the technology is decades old. Although the public health crisis of the pandemic prompted quick COVID-19 vaccine development, prior mRNA vaccine research on other viruses is what has made it possible. Scientific protocols for safety and efficacy were rigorously followed as scientists around the globe combined their knowledge and efforts. In addition to the FDA safety review, the Advisory Committee on Immunization had a panel of vaccine experts, who independently evaluated safety data and also approve the vaccine.

      Will the MRNA vaccine affect or alter my DNA?

  • No. Per the CDC, mRNA vaccines have no effect on your DNA.

Will I experience side effects and what does that really mean?

  • Side effects may occur after getting the vaccine and are evidence that your body’s immune system is responding appropriately to the vaccine. Mild to moderate symptoms occur in about 50% of people but typically resolve within one to two days.
  • Side effects for both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine were generally mild and temporary, including:
    • pain at the injection site,
    • headache,
    • fever,
    • fatigue,
    • chills,
    • muscle pain,
    •  joint pain.

What if I already recovered from COVID-19 – should I still get vaccinated?

  • The vaccine helps your body to produce antibodies as your first line of defense if you do get exposed to SARS CoV-2 (COVID-19). While we are continuing to learn more about long-term immunity, we do know that your immune system has developed the antibody blueprint for quicker antibody response if you are exposed to the virus later. Because we are still learning, individuals who have recovered from a prior COVID-19 infection should also receive the vaccine because natural immunity may not last very long.
  • The Mayo clinic recommends waiting until 90 days after your diagnosis to get a COVID-19 vaccine.

Can I stop taking safety precautions after getting a COVID-19 vaccine?

·        Experts and researchers are still learning about the length of immunity and level of protection provided by the vaccine. Additionally important factors to consider are the number of people vaccinated and the rate of infection in various communities. These factors may affect the efficacy of vaccine consideration As such, at this time the CDC recommends continuing to follow all precautions and guidelines.

How quickly after taking the vaccine will I develop immunity?

·        According to the CDC: “It typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity (protection against the virus that causes COVID-19) after vaccination. That means it’s possible a person could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after vaccination and still get sick.”

Reports of new variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus are popping up globally, including in the U.S… Will the current COVID-19 vaccines protect us against new COVID strains/mutations?

·        Viruses mutate all the time. Most of the variants die out. Sometimes, variants spread without altering the virus’s behavior. Occasionally, these mutations may trigger dramatic changes. At this time, experts believe that the vaccines should protect against variants and mutations of the virus, which are now being reported worldwide.

Dr. Linda Nabha- infectious diseases specialist stated:

“The vaccine is essentially giving us the genetic code against the M spike protein, right?! So essentially the virus has got to change specifically, majorly change that particular part…,” Nabha said. “So you have to have a lot of those mutations for that to actually occur.”

How long will immunity last after receiving the vaccination?

·        According to the CDC:

“At this time, experts do not know how long someone is protected from getting sick again after recovering from COVID-19. The immunity someone gains from having an infection, called natural immunity, varies from person to person. Some early evidence suggests natural immunity may not last very long.

We won’t know how long immunity produced by vaccination lasts until we have more data on how well the vaccines work.

Both natural immunity and vaccine-induced immunity are important aspects of COVID-19 that experts are trying to learn more about, and CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.”

How common are allergic reactions to the COVID-19 vaccine?

  • Allergic reactions, including severe reactions, are rare. Reactions typically occur within the short time frame after administration. All administrations will be observed for 15 minutes. While the rate of anaphylaxis to vaccines is 1 in 1 million (0.0001%), the mortality from COVID-19 is 1-2%, or 1 in 100 to 1 in 50 people, which is the third leading cause of death in the U.S. in 2020.

 

If you are interested in receiving the vaccine, please let your manager know. Not all of our DWPG practices are located in states that are currently classify dental health care providers as part of the Phase 1A priority group for vaccination distribution. The Dental Whale Compliance department has been and is continuously dedicated to keeping you updated on the latest information about vaccination opportunities and the vaccination process. Please feel free to email us at [email protected] with any questions or concerns about the COVID-19 vaccine .

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