The COVID-19 vaccine will be available soon for students across campus and Health and Wellness Services wants you have to all the information you need to make your decision when that time comes. 

 Sometimes, it is hard to know which information is true and which isn’t when it comes to the COVID-19 vaccine.  To help ease some confusion and uncertainty, we are here to address some common misconceptions about the vaccine. 

MYTH #1: I can get COVID-19 from getting the vaccine.

FACT: The current COVID-19 vaccine that has been developed in the United States does not contain the live virus that causes COVID-19. Therefore, the vaccine cannot give you COVID-19.

However, it is possible to have mild symptoms after getting a vaccineAll of these symptoms are common with getting any type of vaccine, including flu shots. 

  • A sore arm or muscle pain around the injection site 
  • Feeling under the weather or fatigued for 1-2 days after the shot 
  • Mild-low grade fever (rare) 

All of these symptoms are signs that your body is working hard to build up its immunity to the virus. 

MYTH #2: The COVID Vaccine will alter my DNA  

FACT: The COVID-19 mRNA vaccine does not alter, change, or interact with a person’s DNA.  

mRNA is naturally occurring in your body and is used in body functions every day. With the COVID vaccine, mRNA can be thought of as instructions for something. These instructions are put into your body when you receive the vaccine, and your body puts these to use right away.  

These instructions are then used to make protein pieces in your ribosomes, which then stimulates your body’s immune response. Your body stimulates an immune response because the mRNA is new and has not been seen by your body before. Anything that is new and not recognized by your body stimulates an immune response, just like when you get the Flu shot.  

While your immune response is being stimulated, antibodies against COVID are being made in your body, just like if you were naturally infected with COVID. The result of this immune response with mRNA is that your body has learned to fight the COVID virus and therefore has the knowledge to fight COVID if you were to be exposed in the future. The body gains protection and knowledge of COVID without you experiencing all the symptoms and quarantine of COVID.  

MYTH #3: If I’ve already been ill with COVID-19, I don’t need to get the vaccine because I’m immune. 

FACT: After being ill with COVID-19, you will have a built-up immunity to the virus for 90-days after.

This is referred to as the 90-Day Immunity Window. After your window expires, you will be just as prone to getting reinfected as you were prior to becoming ill.

During your 90-day immunity window, it is not recommended to get retested or to quarantine if you come in close contact with the virus. This is because testing will likely yield a positive result due to the virus still being present in your system from a prior infection vs. a new infection. However, 90-day immunity isn’t your “Get Out of Jail Free” card, as you can still become ill within 90-days. 

MYTH #4: The government will insert a microchip or tracker into me when I get the vaccine. 

FACT: Neither vaccine contains a microchip nor tracking device. 

Both vaccines, Pfizer & Moderna have come out with fact sheets detailing the ingredients of the COVID vaccine. Of all the ingredients listed, none mentioned a microchip or any other sort of tracking device. In all reality, if you own a smart phone or watch, have a Facebook account, or use any type of GPS services, you are already being tracked. 

When it comes to the news and social media it isn’t always easy to decipher what information is true and which isn’t regarding the COVID-19 vaccine. We have shed some light on some of the common misconceptions associated with the vaccine, but by no means is this a comprehensive list.  

We hope this information will help to ease any uncertainty you may have and help you to make your decision when the times comes. We can all do our part in putting an end to the coronavirus by getting vaccinated. Can we count on you? 

Have questions or concerns about the COVID vaccine? Email questions to healthpromotion@winona.edu 

Stay Informed about the COVID-19 Vaccine

Follow @WSUHealth on social media for more updates about the COVID-19 Vaccine. 

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Amy Nelson

Amy Nelson graduated in 2020 with a degree in Art: I-Design. As a student, she worked with the University Marketing & Communications team as a writer and photographer. She was hired after graduation to support public health communications during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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