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This term describes when enough people have protection - either because they’ve already had the disease or they’ve been vaccinated - it is unlikely a virus or bacteria can spread between people in a community and cause outbreaks of disease.
Public health experts are still learning about what percentage of a community would need to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity against COVID-19. The percentage needed to reach herd immunity varies by disease.
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Anyone ages 12 years and older that completed their primary series and it has been at least 2 months since their last COVID monovalent vaccine or booster is eligible to receive one bivalent booster shot. This updated booster became available starting September 2022.
Children ages 5-11 years that completed their primary series can get one monovalent booster shot. Updated bivalent boosters may become available in the coming months
Make an appointment with Clay County Public Health Center for your booster shot.
Learn more about boosters from CDC or in these additional FAQs.
Medical and public health experts, including the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics, recommend that children and adolescents age 6 months and older get a COVID-19 vaccine to help protect them from contracting and spreading the virus.
The vaccine is the best way to protect children from becoming severely ill or having long-lasting health impacts due to COVID-19. While children and adolescents are typically at lower risk than adults of becoming severely ill or hospitalized from COVID-19, it is still possible. COVID-19 has become one of the top 10 causes of pediatric death, and tens of thousands of children and teens have been hospitalized with COVID-19.
Another important reason for children to get the COVID-19 vaccine is to protect their friends, family, and the broader community from the spread of the virus. The higher the vaccination rates, the lower the chances that the coronavirus will mutate into additional variants.
You can get vaccinated after having COVID-19 as soon as you are able to end isolation. See the criteria for ending isolation here.
An exception would be for people who were treated for COVID-19 with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma or people who have a history of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in adults or children (MIS-A or MIS-C). They may need to wait a while after recovering before they can get vaccinated and its recommended to talk to their doctor.
Some recent studies indicate that immunity gained through infection can be highly effective. However, we are still learning exactly how long this natural immunity can last. Vaccination is also a much safer way to acquire immunity. While some people may have mild cases of COVID, it is not worth the risk of having a more serious case that requires medical intervention or results in long-term health issues.
You can receive a copy of your vaccination record from Clay County Public Health Center by completing this online form. The record will include proof of your COVID-19 vaccination if you were vaccinated anywhere in Missouri. We cannot offer replacement cards at this time.
If you were vaccinated with Operation Safe or North Kansas City Hospital, a record of your vaccination can also be found in the myhealth patient portal. Learn more.
If you are vaccinated, you can resume many activities that you did before the pandemic. However, to maximize protection from variants and prevent possibly spreading it to others, it is recommended to wear a mask indoors in public if you are in an area of substantial or high transmission, even if you are vaccinated. Some cities, counties and businesses may require the use of a mask regardless of vaccination status.
Please see CDC's guidance for When You've Been Fully Vaccinated.
See CDC's latest guidance for who needs to quarantine and when.
Yes. It is still possible to contract COVID-19, with these cases being known as "breakthrough cases." Although the vaccine is highly effective at preventing COVID-19, is not 100% effective. There is some evidence that vaccination may make illness less severe for those who are vaccinated and still get sick.
If you've been vaccinated, you should still watch out for symptoms of COVID-19, especially if you’ve been around someone who is sick. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you should get tested and stay home and away from others.
You may choose to continue to wear masks and practicing physical distancing, even after you have been vaccinated. Learn more about After You've Been Fully Vaccinated.
If it has been less than two weeks since your final dose of COVID-19 vaccine, regardless of your age, you are NOT considered fully vaccinated. Keep taking all precautions until you are fully vaccinated.
The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines both require two doses of the vaccine to reach maximum effectiveness. Even after receiving your second dose, you will not be immediately protected from COVID-19. Studies show that it takes about one to two weeks after your last dose for your body to be able to protect itself against illness.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine takes about two weeks after your first and only dose.
If you received a Pfizer or Moderna vaccine for your first dose, it is very important to get both doses of the vaccine so that your body develops enough antibodies to fight the COVID-19 virus if you get infected in the future.
It is also very important that you receive the second dose of your COVID-19 vaccine on time. The time frame between the vaccine’s first and second dose is determined by the companies producing the vaccine to maximize your body’s ability to create antibodies against the virus. Many vaccinators will go ahead and schedule your appointment for your second dose while making your first appointment or during your appointment.
Getting more than one dose for a vaccine is not unusual. In fact, it’s the norm. Many routine vaccines require more than one dose for maximum protection.
If you have symptoms shortly after receiving the vaccine, these symptoms do not mean you have gotten COVID-19 from the vaccine. You may have some side effects, which are normal signs that your body is building protection. These side effects may feel like flu and may even affect your ability to do daily activities, but they should go away in a few days. For more information about symptoms after receiving the vaccine you can view the CDC’s What to Expect after Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine fact sheet.
Yes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the COVID-19 vaccines offer protection against infection by most variants. Most important, they have prevented serious illness, hospitalization, and death, even at a time when new variants are spreading around the world.
In September 2022, updated booster vaccines became available. These new boosters contain an updated bivalent formula that both boosts immunity against the original coronavirus strain and also protects against the newer Omicron variants that account for most of the current cases. Updated boosters are intended to provide optimal protection against the virus and address waning vaccine effectiveness over time.