Care Ring is not able to offer the COVID-19 vaccine directly to our patients on a regular basis, but we have been working with our community health partners to host vaccine clinics. We've also assembled some helpful information for you, all in one place, to answer your questions.
COVID-19 vaccines help our bodies develop immunity to the virus that causes COVID-19 without us having to get the illness. Different types of vaccines work in different ways to offer protection, but with all types of vaccines, the body is left with a supply of “memory” T-lymphocytes as well as B-lymphocytes that will remember how to fight that virus in the future.
It typically takes a few weeks for the body to produce T-lymphocytes and B-lymphocytes after vaccination. Therefore, it is possible that a person could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after vaccination and then get sick because the vaccine did not have enough time to provide protection.
Sometimes after vaccination, the process of building immunity can cause symptoms, such as fever. These symptoms are normal and are a sign that the body is building immunity.
The COVID-19 vaccine works using messenger RNA, or mRNA. mRNA vaccines are a new type of vaccine to protect against infectious diseases. To trigger an immune response, many vaccines put a weakened or inactivated germ into our bodies. Not mRNA vaccines. Instead, they teach our cells how to make a protein—or even just a piece of a protein—that triggers an immune response inside our bodies. That immune response, which produces antibodies, is what protects us from getting infected if the real virus enters our bodies.
Source: Centers for Disease Control - More info
The vaccines were built upon years of work to develop vaccines for similar viruses.
Tested, safe and effective. More than 70,000 people volunteered in clinical trials for two vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna) to see if they are safe and work to prevent COVID-19 illness. Volunteers included Black/African Americans, Hispanics/LatinX, Asians and others.
To date, the vaccines are 95% effective in preventing COVID-19 with no serious safety concerns noted in the clinical trials. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) makes sure the vaccines are safe and can prevent people from getting COVID-19. Like all drugs, vaccine safety continues to be monitored after they are in use.
IMPORTANT: you must get 2 doses of the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for it to be the most effective. For the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, the interval is 21 days between the first and second dose. And for the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, the interval is 28 days between the first and second dose. When you get your first dose, you will receive an appointment date for your second dose.
Source: FDA - More info
The vaccine made by Johnson & Johnson does NOT require two doses. It is a single shot.
You cannot get COVID-19 from the vaccine. You may have temporary reactions like a sore arm, headache or feeling tired and achy for a day or two after receiving the vaccine.
Source: NC Dept of Health and Human Services - More info
COVID-19 vaccination is recommended and approved for everyone ages 5 and up.
Meckleburg County has the most up-to-date information on where to go for your COVID-19 vaccine, including boosters.
Proof of US citizenship is NOT required to get the vaccine.
If you need free transportation to and from your vaccine appointment, contact the Mecklenburg Transportation System at 980-314-7600.
Eligible residents can call RIDE UNITED NC at 1-844-771-RIDE for help in scheduling free round-trip rides to vaccine appointments.
Lyft's Vaccine Access Program provides free or discounted rides to a vaccination site.
Individuals who are homebound, have an ongoing physical or mental disability, and are unable to travel to receive a COVID-19 vaccine can complete this form to request to receive the vaccine at home.
Each request will be reviewed by Public Health and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Emergency Management and scheduled based on eligibility criteria and appointment availability.