What Does Fully Vaccinated Mean?

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

As of this week, every adult in the United States should be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. That’s positive news when it comes to ending this pandemic – but we’re not there yet. And just because you may have gotten your shot – or shots depending upon which vaccine you received – doesn’t give you the green light to throw away your masks. It’s important that you understand what it means to be fully vaccinated.

No matter which vaccine you get, doctors say it takes at least two weeks (after the final shot) for the vaccine to take effect because of how our immune systems work. A report by Bustle explains it as this: “First, the vaccine creates antibodies in the bloodstream…and then it trains the cells of the body to become immune…” That entire process takes about two weeks, during which time your body is building up immunity to the coronavirus. 

According to the report, with both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines you should be protected against Covid-19 two weeks after your final dose. It cites the CDC as saying while you are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after your Johnson & Johnson vaccine, your immune system will continue to react to the shot for at least a month becoming even more effective at 28 days post shot.

No matter which vaccine you get, the CDC says that once you are fully vaccinated it should be safe to gather unmasked with friends indoors – just as long as they have also been vaccinated. It’s also okay to visit indoors without a mask with one household of unvaccinated people, provided they are not at high risk. This means you can finally visit with your grandkids! The CDC is also giving the green light to travel once again. However, you should still be vigilant to protect yourself and others from Covid-19 by continuing to take precautions such as avoiding crowds, continuing to wear a mask in public, and practicing social distancing.

Our Work

The Seniors Trust is committed to improving the lives of seniors by providing important information about Covid-19 and by working to improve Social Security. It wants to see Congress pass the Social Security Expansion Act. This landmark piece of legislation will provide bigger monthly Social Security benefits, establish a more realistic cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for seniors, and ensure the long-term survival of the Social Security program. 

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