VA is listening to your questions about the COVID-19 vaccine and this blog series answers your questions. Want to ask a question? Leave your comment below.

I have to stand in line to get vaccinated. Is that safe?

Yes, you can safely stand in line to get vaccinated as long as proper safety measures like masking and social distancing are enforced. VA and other health care providers have taken steps to ensure that everyone can receive the COVID-19 vaccine safely.

If you have to stand in line to receive the vaccine, you may safely do so. Remember to stay six feet away from others, wear your mask, and wash your hands after receiving your vaccine.

I’m worried that I might be allergic to the COVID-19 vaccine. What should I do?

If you are worried that you might be allergic to a COVID-19 vaccine, you should talk to your health care provider before receiving the vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued guidance for those who may be allergic to COVID-19 vaccine.

If you have had allergic reactions to other vaccines before, you should talk with your provider to determine if you should receive the COVID-19 vaccine. It is possible to be allergic to one type of vaccine, but not the others. You can review ingredients of the different types of COVID-19 vaccine and discuss your best options with your provider.

Can I get vaccinated if I’m currently receiving treatment for cancer? What if I’m a cancer survivor?

You may receive the COVID-19 vaccine safely. Talking with your health care provider first may be helpful, particularly if you are currently being treated. The American Cancer Society (ACS) notes that many experts recommend that most people with cancer or a history of cancer should receive the vaccine.

Experts are still studying whether COVID-19 vaccines are as effective in those being currently treated for cancer, but evidence suggests it is safe to receive the vaccine.

Was the COVID-19 vaccine tested on a variety of ages and ethnicities?

Yes, the COVID-19 vaccine was tested on a variety of ages and ethnicities. Tens of thousands of adults of many ages, genders, ethnic and racial backgrounds were included in studies. Testing results showed that the vaccine was consistently safe and effective across all of these groups.

Keep an eye out for more answers to your COVID-19 and vaccine questions, and remember to follow good health habits in the meantime. To keep it simple, follow the three W’s: wear your masks, wash your hands, and watch your distance from others!

To learn more, you can review CDC information about COVID-19 and vaccination.

Information about COVID-19 Vaccines for People with Allergies | CDC

COVID-19 Vaccines in People with Cancer

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50 Comments

  1. William A Mousseau April 30, 2021 at 2:11 pm

    this is for the pharmacy of the cdc I have full blown CRPS what will this shot do for me as far as pain and should i even get it

    • CARLOS COELLO April 30, 2021 at 6:06 pm

      Honestly, your question is kind of tricky. It sounds as asking “what will Tylenol do to alleviate or cure my Psoriasis”? The short answer will be: NOTHING! The covid19 vaccines are designed to fight off the covid19 virus. They are not pain-killers or anti-inflammatory drugs. However, one of my aunts, who is 94 years old, still a very active woman, told me the other day that after she received the first dose of the Moderna vaccine, her arthritic pains have almost disappeared. Who knows, maybe there are some “off-label” properties on these vaccines, but we need more time to understand them.

  2. Don Poznicek April 29, 2021 at 7:38 pm

    I have congestive heart failure. Why do I want to get vaccinated when I am going to die anyway?

    • Sugar Balanced April 30, 2021 at 9:39 am

      GEEEEEZZ.. how many more days do you want to live? ANY???

      • CARLOS COELLO April 30, 2021 at 5:33 pm

        BECAUSE YOU ARE GOING TO DIE ANYWAY, BUT THAT DOES NOT MEAN THAT YOU SHOULD BE IRREPONSIBLE WITH THE REST OF US. YOU CAN HAVE HEART FAILURE AND COVID AT THE SAME TIME, AND YOU COULD TAKE MANY PEOPLE ALONG WITH YOU TO THE GRAVE. THAT’S WHY!

  3. Cindy Riefstahl April 29, 2021 at 5:19 pm

    My husband receive his first Moderna shot at the VA hospital on February 13th and was scheduled to receive his second shot on March 13th. He did not have Covid when he received the first vaccine. On Feb. 15th he developed symptoms of Covid and was tested on March 17th which turned out positive. On Feb. 20th, he was taken to the hospital and died from Covid on Feb. 26th. I, his wife developed Covid during this time and was not allowed to be with him while he was dying. Needless to say, I will not get any vaccine since I truly believe that the vaccine contributed to his death.

  4. L April 29, 2021 at 12:07 pm

    My husband and I both got our shots, 1 & 2 at the VA. On the second dose my husband came up with an allergy that looked like small red dots, similar to measles. At the area we had to sit for a specific amount of time, he showed it to them. They said it did not look like a contact allergy. We wanted to report it to someone but it seems that no one really cared. These spots that were small red and itchy lasted over a month on his arms. He has health issues of Type 2 diabetes with thyroid and reaction to other things such as some medications. Hope that we won’t have to go through these shots again.

    • Disgruntled Veteran April 29, 2021 at 7:07 pm

      Report to the Vaers System
      https://vaers.hhs.gov/reportevent.html

    • CARLOS COELLO April 30, 2021 at 5:47 pm

      I am sorry for your lost. But the vaccine DID NOT contribute to your husband demise. Most likely he contracted COVID19 a few days before receiving the 1st dose of the vaccine (Feb 13th), which could have been probably around Feb 9-10. That gave the virus enough time to grow, but not so much as to be detected 3-4 days after the exposure, but enough time to produce symptoms after a week, which is the average time when a patient will develop them (if the patient is going to have any symptoms). On Feb. 17th he tested positive (just 3 days after the 1st dose of the vaccine). Dyas later he became very ill and unfortunately, he passed 6 days later. The vaccine has nothing to do with it. The vaccines DO NOT contain the virus. The vaccine contain either a protein of the virus (Spike-protein in Moderna and Pfizer vaccines), or a harmless version of a similar virus that teaches your body how to make copies of the spike protein, so that , if you are exposed to the real virus later, your body will recognize it and know it how to fight it off.

  5. Jeffrey Wansley April 29, 2021 at 10:40 am

    There are too many variables with these vaccines. I am taking oral chemo for prostate cancer. I am NOT willing to take ANY chance with these off the ccx wall vaccines.

  6. W E April 29, 2021 at 10:38 am

    4 days after my first Pfizer shot, I woke up with middle of the night with VERY cold sweats and explosive diareeha, I passed blood in my stool for 3+ days and was very lethargic for a day plus with a slight temperature. Finally after 6 days my bowel movements basically returned to “normal”. I went to my scheduled second shot but declined to take it as I also have a history of significant adverse reactions to the shots we all received while in the service. While I shared this information with my Dr., the CDC and VA, thus far I have received no follow-up except by me?

  7. Robert G Morris April 29, 2021 at 10:27 am

    How come as a veteran I can get a shot At the VA but my wife can’t because she doesn’t have a Social Security number Walgreens will do it with just a passport number is it Because she’s Chinese she is still my wife.

    • John Levesque April 29, 2021 at 3:17 pm

      My wife couldn’t get her vaccine at the VA either. You took a cheap shot and made a RACIST comment. The VA treats it’s qualified patients with excellent care. You should be ashamed of yourself!!!

  8. John Levesque April 29, 2021 at 9:34 am

    Hello, I received my first Moderna Vaccine on February 13 and was scheduled to receive the second vaccine on March 13. However, I live in South Florida and my parents live around Atlanta, GA. My father passed away about a week before my second vaccine was to be administered and I needed to get up with my family. I checked with the VA to see if it was OK to get the vaccine a little earlier so I could be with family. I was told yes and they said to just come to their walk in site in WPB. When I got to the site the woman immediately pointed out that I was receiving the vaccine 5 days to early. She also said there is a 4 day Grace Period. She checked with the pharmacist and was told it was OK to get the vaccine on the 23rd day (5 days early). This was even reconfirmed all the way to the person who finally gave me the 2nd vaccine for Moderna on my 23rd day. However, since the issue came up, I researched it and can see that the Moderna 2nd vaccine should not be given more than 4 days early and shouldn’t be given early (later is better). It also says if you received the vaccine earlier no more vaccines are needed (this is vague paraphrasing of the CDC website). I now wish I had waited but I did not. My question is: Am I completely vaccinated with 94% efficacy like everyone else or did I somehow jump the gun and weaken the vaccines effectiveness? Thanks for your help.

  9. Javier Cruz-colon April 29, 2021 at 5:23 am

    hi there I’m allergic to the Flu vaccine, nasal or injection too, I tended to pass out within minutes and get hives and develop difficulty breathing too can I take the vaccine for Covid?

    • Julie M Davis-Raley36 April 29, 2021 at 8:26 am

      Please don’t. I have been taking the H medicine going on 7 years and it has been a miracle drug for me. I even quit getting congested and losing my urine no matter how many kiegsls I did.

    • Grace Miazza April 29, 2021 at 8:37 am

      You know the answer, why are you asking? Are you thinking well I may be allergic to one, but not another? Look at the ingredients, go to social media and see the experiences others are having. If you have a reaction, who will care? Will your MD? So it is up to you to ask yourself, do your own research.

    • John Levesque April 29, 2021 at 3:28 pm

      I would consult my VA medical contact for a professional answer specific to your situation.

  10. Hardy Rose April 29, 2021 at 12:46 am

    I had the vaccines in February 8 and March 8; Within a few days of the second shot I developed pains in my left leg. Pain and weakness up and down the leg and into my left hip .
    lMedicine had no relief but the pain has reduced some . Rising from a chair and going up and down stairs is usually painful. I hope it will go away but the weakness continues.
    Acupuncture (20 treatments) were not much help.
    I hope this goes away, but the people at the VA are stumped.

  11. M. Nellesen April 29, 2021 at 12:00 am

    If a person is taking anti-rejction medicine because of a double transplant should they take the COVID-19 vaccine?

  12. William Allen Rush April 28, 2021 at 11:44 pm

    where is my answer I posted last week? I never recived an answer last week?

  13. Leland R Moore April 28, 2021 at 11:43 pm

    I went through radiation therapy for prostate cancer late 2019 and four heart stents. I have always had negative reactions to flue vaccines. Should I risk getting vaccine?

  14. Curtis Cope April 28, 2021 at 10:49 pm

    The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine, and the Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine have not been licensed or approved by the FDA, but were approved for emergency use only. And, are still doing post emergency use authorization studies not only on the effectiveness of the gene therapy, but also adverse events, such as, but not limited to, deaths. None of them, since these are Operation Warp Speed “vaccines”, have studies on long-term adverse reactions. You… are the test subjects. These are all facts that can be found at the FDA website.

  15. Priscilla Fleming April 28, 2021 at 10:25 pm

    Why did I got hard bump at the shot site?

  16. Steven J April 28, 2021 at 10:23 pm

    I heard the Dr on the news say that not only have they found that vaccinated people cannot carry and spread the virus, this is from the CDC, they say getting vaccinated protects those around you. And although they say the effectiveness of the vaccine is only 95%, only .01% of vaccinated people have gotten it and been admitted to the hospital. We need to be careful to get our information from reliable, respected, sources. There’s so much scuttlebutt going around we need to be careful.

  17. Gary Rayfield April 28, 2021 at 10:22 pm

    I have a friend with severe Asthma. Is it safe for her to get the Vaccine?

  18. Jodi Harbroe April 28, 2021 at 9:50 pm

    After I received the second vaccine shot, I have been experiencing some odd symptoms that I have not seen anyone else mention that they are experiencing, but I am not experiencing any of the symptoms that have been listed so I am not certain that my symptoms are actually symptoms of the vaccine. Please do not tell me to see my PCP. he only sees patients every 6 months so seeing him is not an option. What should I do?

  19. T April 28, 2021 at 9:45 pm

    I question the wisdom of advising people on chemo to get the vaccine. The point of the vaccine is to provoke an immune response; most of the people on cancer treatment are immunocompromised. How is that safe? Who are the “experts” that recommend such a course?

  20. Brad Roningen April 28, 2021 at 9:27 pm

    I have hypoglycemia can i get the shot??????

  21. John Morrison April 28, 2021 at 9:13 pm

    I’m vaccinated and tired of the rest of you people. No more masks unless your paranoid and that’s your problem, not mine. Flu cases are higher and your still alive.

  22. Chester Payne April 28, 2021 at 8:44 pm

    I am currently living, long term, with lymphoma and using ongoing chemotherapy to treat it. I got the Moderna vaccine in January and February with no problems. I can’t guarantee you the same results, but it is worth considering.

  23. Phil Dyrt April 28, 2021 at 8:40 pm

    Not to cause issues but I really want to know if these vaccines have any long term effects.

    • Antonio April 29, 2021 at 11:22 am

      They wont absolutely know this for a long time

  24. Wayne W Childs April 28, 2021 at 7:51 pm

    I have had blood clots in both legs should I takke the vaccine?? I take eliquis all the time.Thanks.

  25. Wayne W Childs April 28, 2021 at 7:48 pm

    I have had blood clots in both legs before and taking Eliquis now should I consider taking the vaccine??Please let me know??Wayne W ChildsI have tried several solution and non is correct.What do you want???

  26. Clifford F. Zeman April 28, 2021 at 7:39 pm

    Been testing positive and negative for Covid for four months, Drs. told me that I’m asymptomatic, had only two days I stayed in bed, very weak. This was in the middle of December 2020, no side effects at all.
    The question is should I get the vaccine now or should I wait 2-3 months. Yes I have anti-bodies. I get all different answers when I ask different people..
    Does anyone really have an answer.

    • Clifford F. Zeman April 28, 2021 at 7:42 pm

      Forgot to add my age….75

  27. Concerned April 28, 2021 at 7:24 pm

    What about those of us how have taken the Anthrax shot six times or more, the the small pox shot in 2006. Have studies been done on the effects of the new vaccine with these other vaccines? I’m I going to get cancer from all the mixing of different shots? Especially this synthetic shot?

    • Disgruntled Veteran April 29, 2021 at 7:37 pm

      They got you with the anthrax too? How did you stomach it six times?! Why would you let them inject you with anything again?

  28. Dino R Torres April 28, 2021 at 7:18 pm

    My Son is my primary caregiver. Is he eligible to be vaccinated by the VA.

  29. Jerry Boyd April 28, 2021 at 7:15 pm

    I have a rare blood disease called polycythemia vera (PV), thick blood. With all the talk about blood clots from the vaccine, I wonder if I should take the vaccine. PV warns of blood clots forming in the legs and traveling to the lungs or heart. I have read where the vaccines does the the same. Right now I am thinking the vaccine will cause more of a danger when combined with PV than just PV.

  30. Thomas Mysker April 28, 2021 at 6:35 pm

    How effective is the vaccine in preventing deaths I know it’s 96% effective against hospitalization. I haven’t been able to find this information from the manufacturer or CDC can you help.

    • CARLOS COELLO April 30, 2021 at 6:13 pm

      I would infer that a medicine or a drug is 96% effective in keeping you from getting admitted to a hospital, that same drug is probably around 96% effective in preventing your death from that particular disease. Keep in mind that you can still die from 1000 different reasons.

  31. Martha Armstrong April 28, 2021 at 10:59 am

    My daughter has lymphedema and was advised against taking the shots. She was told that it would cause excessive swelling in her legs. What can be done to help these individuals who have lymphedema?

  32. Larry Furgal April 24, 2021 at 5:48 pm

    Thank you for all this wonderful advice and updates.

  33. Jay Martee April 23, 2021 at 8:14 pm

    I got the Pfizer vaccine in January. Should I take the vaccine again (later this spring/summer) as sort of a booster?

    • Marie DAngelo April 28, 2021 at 7:28 pm

      I’m not a medical expert, but as I understand the vaccines, you are supposed to get a 2nd dose of any of the vaccines, except for Johnson & Johnson (Jansen)

  34. P April 21, 2021 at 11:04 pm

    I have been seeing many more people and their children without masks. Thank you for verifying that vaccinated people can still be hosts and spread the disease to others. Also wearing an appropriate mask protects the other person from your germs, not you from theirs.

    • Karl Keefer April 28, 2021 at 10:50 pm

      Is there any information concerning the end time of spike protein production after getting the shot?
      Can the spike protein produced in a vaccinated person hurt others?

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