You're Fully Vaccinated. What's Next?

The CDC says some rules and suggestions change; others stay the same as those who are unvaccinated.

It seems as if the COVID-19 vaccine is being distributed to everyone just by scrolling on social media and flipping through different news channels on TV. Many are thinking the shot equals a complete “get out of jail free card” when it comes to standard rules regarding the pandemic, but that’s not the case.

According to the CDC, the COVID-19 vaccines are effective at protecting you from getting the disease. In some instances, people who have been fully vaccinated can pick back up the activities they stopped prior to the pandemic. However, we’re still learning how exactly this shot is affecting the spread, therefore, precautions should be taken to be on the safe side. This includes the basics from the past year: wearing a mask, social, distancing and avoiding crowds. Besides helping your immunity, the vaccine does come with some freebies.

What You Can Start to Do if Fully Vaccinated:

• Gather indoors with other fully vaccinated people without wearing a mask or staying six feet apart

• Gather indoors with unvaccinated people from one other household without masks or staying six feet apart, unless any of those people have an increased risk or illness from COVID-19

• Travel within the U.S. without getting tested before or after travel nor self-quarantine after travel

International travel regulations depend entirely on the country being traveled to – there is no need to get tested prior to traveling abroad; you should get tested afterwards

• You don’t need to get tested or stay away from others if you’ve been around someone with COVID-19 unless you have symptoms.

Experts say the COVID-19 vaccines are effective at preventing the disease. However, precautions are still important for both vaccinated and unvaccinated people. Experts also say that since the vaccines are new, there is still a lot to be learned, such as: how effective they are against others, how well the vaccines keep people from spreading the disease and how long it can protect people for.

The CDC claims you are not fully vaccinated until two weeks after you have taken your second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, and you are not fully vaccinated after two weeks of a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson Janssen vaccine.

About the Author

Shereen Hashem is the Associate Content Editor for Occupational Health & Safety magazine.

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