COVID Vaccine FAQ

OCHC is working hard to plan COVID-19 vaccine distribution in accordance with state guidelines. The Minnesota Department of Health directs vaccine distribution.

We know many are eager to receive the vaccine. Follow along on our website and social media for updates on when it will become available. We will also be sending direct patient messages. To learn how to opt-in to direct patient messages, please talk to your provider or a member of our front desk staff. We look forward to a healthier future.

Can’t find the COVID Vaccine information you are looking for? Ask us directly here.

COVID-19 Vaccines now available for anyone 18 years or older!

Call (651) 251-5967 to schedule your appointment today.

OCHC will be prioritizing clinic patients, those who are older, and those with underlying health conditions.

Moderna aka mRNA-1273 SARS-CoV2

The vaccine is being distributed in phases.
  • Phase 1a: frontline healthcare personnel and long-term care residents
  • Phase 1b: other essential workers (education, food and agriculture, utilities, police, firefighters, corrections officers, transportation)
  • Phase 1c: Adults with high-risk medical conditions and adults 65+
  • The vaccine will become available to the general public after that. We do not know yet when the vaccine will be available to all. It could be as early as early summer or as late as fall. Currently, vaccines are only approved for use on people of 16 years or older. A children’s vaccine will come at a later time.

    OCHC is distributing the Moderna vaccine. The vaccine is given in 2 doses, 28 days apart. Protection kicks in about 2 weeks after the second dose. Even after getting vaccinated, it is recommended that you wear a mask and continue to social distance until the vaccine has been widely distributed.

    Some people experience side effects for a few days after the vaccine, including soreness in the arm where the vaccine was injected, muscle aches, headaches, and occasionally fever.

    For a walkthrough of what it is like to get the vaccine, check out Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s livestream of her experience here.

    COVID-19 vaccine will be provided to everyone at no cost.
    There is no live virus in the vaccine. Instead, it uses messenger RNA to teach our cells how to fight off the virus. The RNA in the vaccine cannot change your DNA in any way. For more detail on how mRNA vaccines work, visit the CDC website. There are no eggs, preservatives, latex, or pork products in the vaccine. It is halal. For a complete list of ingredients, see the fact sheets for the two vaccines that have been authorized by the FDA so far:
    This vaccine was developed much more quickly than many others mostly because it was the top priority for scientists around the world – a lot of money, resources, and labor have gone into creating a safe vaccine. The requirements for this vaccine were the same as all other vaccines and no stages were skipped in the development process. Instead, some of the clinical trials were done at the same time rather than one after the other. In addition, scientists were able to build on years of research about other coronaviruses and mRNA vaccines. The vaccines that have been authorized for use have been tested on tens of thousands of people and reviewed by many scientists. For more details on how the vaccine was made, see this short document from the MN Department of Health. Additionally, the FDA reviewed and approved these vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna) for emergency use and are still held to the same safety standards as other drugs and vaccines. Scientists had a head start in developing this vaccine.  While the technology is new for a vaccine, scientists have been studying it for decades.

    Total of 30,420 volunteers across 99 health centers in the US. Volunteers were randomly assigned in 1:1 fashion to control and vaccine group. Each group had 15,210 participants (of that 15,181 individuals received at least 1 dose of the vaccine). Volunteers included people from Black/African American, Hispanic LatinX, Asian and other communities.

    Injection site reaction (common for most vaccines), and systemic symptoms like fatigue, headaches, body aches. We will watch everyone for 15 minutes after they receive the vaccine to make sure immediate problems don’t happen.

    Yes, but the vaccine appears to be 95% effective at preventing mild and severe Coronavirus infections and is meant to help your body recognize and fight the virus and help reduce significant illness. However, ​95% is not 100% protective so It is still important to wear a mask, practice social distancing, hand hygiene etc.

    Possibly but the point at which herd immunity is achieved quickly depends largely on how many people get vaccinated. Herd immunity can also be achieved by actual infection with the Coronavirus but that would be a longer process and many lives would be lost.

    This population was not studied. ACOG recommends not be withheld from pregnant or lactating women. Unfortunately, women who are pregnant are at greater risk of complications from the virus itself. Women should first speak with their medical doctor and Ob/gyn before getting the vaccine (though this is not required)

    It is recommended that all adults get the vaccine even if they have already had the disease. Although getting the virus can give you a certain amount of immunity, we don’t know for sure how long it lasts and the vaccine will offer better protection against becoming re-infected.

    Tell your vaccination provider about all of your medical conditions, including if you:

    • ​if you have been hospitalized for COVID-19 treatment
    • if you have ad the flue vaccine within the last two weeks
    • have any allergies
    • have a fever
    • have a bleeding disorder or are on a blood thinner
    • are immunocompromised or are on a medicine that affects your immune system
    • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant
    • are breastfeeding
    • have received another COVID-19 vaccine

    Most medications are safe to continue if receiving the vaccination. People who are on immunosuppressant therapy might have a diminished immune response to the vaccine (might not be as protective).

    If you are currently sick, you should not receive the vaccine, although the vaccine does not contain live or inactivated virus particles so it shouldn’t make you ill or worse off if already ill. But if you are ill, you might currently have COVID-19 or current symptoms may be difficult to distinguish from side effects of the vaccine. It is still recommended that you get vaccinated if you have already tested positive for COVID-19 since the duration of natural immunity is unknown.

    FDA has authorized the emergency use of the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine in individuals 18 years of age and older.

    FDA has authorized the emergency use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine in individuals 16 years of age and older.

    • had a severe allergic reaction after a previous dose of this vaccine
    • had a severe allergic reaction to any ingredient of this vaccine.
    Side effects that have been reported with the COVID-19 Vaccine include:
    • Injection site reactions: pain, tenderness and swelling of the lymph nodes in the same arm of the injection, swelling (hardness), and redness
    • General side effects: fatigue, headache, muscle pain, joint pain, chills, nausea and vomiting, and fever
    There is a remote chance that the COVID-19 Vaccine could cause a severe allergic reaction. A severe allergic reaction would usually occur within a few minutes to one hour after getting a dose of the COVID-19 Vaccine. For this reason, your vaccination provider may ask you to stay at the place where you received your vaccine for monitoring after vaccination. Signs of a severe allergic reaction can include:
    • Difficulty breathing
    • Swelling of your face and throat
    • A fast heartbeat
    • A bad rash all over your body
    • Dizziness and weakness
    These may not be all the possible side effects of the COVID-19 Vaccine. Serious and unexpected side effects may occur. The COVID-19 Vaccine is still being studied in clinical trials.

    Investigations are still ongoing but the vaccines were still effective against “mutant” strands. Side note – viruses commonly mutate (i.e. flu virus)

    • Visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing
    • Visit with unvaccinated people from a single household who are at low risk for severe COVID-19 disease indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing
    • Refrain from quarantine and testing following a known exposure if asymptomatic

    For now, fully vaccinated people should continue to:

    • Take precautions in public like wearing a well-fitted mask and physical distancing
    • Wear masks, practice physical distancing, and adhere to other prevention measures when visiting with unvaccinated people who are at increased risk for severe COVID-19 disease or who have an unvaccinated household member who is at increased risk for severe COVID-19 disease
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