COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs


Why should we get vaccinated?

  • The COVID Vaccines are very effective – the BEST vaccines we have ever had – 95% effective.
  • The COVID Vaccines are very safe – they cannot cause Covid-19 disease because they are not made with any part of a Covid-19 virus.
  • The COVID Vaccines will prevent deaths but only if enough of us get vaccinated, as many as possible.
  • We encourage everyone to get your shot to protect yourself, your family and your community.

Why do some people get sick after the vaccine?  Does it give you COVID?

None of the authorized and recommended COVID-19 vaccines or COVID-19 vaccines currently in development in the United States contain the live virus that causes COVID-19. The vaccines teach our immune systems how to recognize and fight the virus that causes COVID-19. Sometimes this process can cause symptoms, such as fever, tiredness, or sore muscles. These symptoms are normal and are a sign that the body is building protection against the virus that causes COVID-19. For most people, these side effects will last no longer than a day or two. Having these types of side effects does NOT mean that you have COVID-19. If you have questions about your health after your shot, call your health care provider.

After getting a COVID-19 vaccine, will I test positive for COVID-19 on a viral test?

No. Neither the recently authorized and recommended vaccines nor the other COVID-19 vaccines currently in clinical trials in the United States can cause you to test positive on viral tests, which are used to see if you have a current infection.​  If your body develops an immune response—the goal of vaccination—there is a possibility you may test positive on some antibody tests.  Antibodies are a part of the immune system that recognizes illness (antigens) and activates to fight them off.

Who determines the order in which staff get vaccinated?

A CDPH Workgroup developed California-specific guidance for the prioritization and allocation of vaccines when supplies are limited. 

How will I be notified that it is time for me to get a vaccine? 

Individuals may sign-up for vaccination through their health provider, through Sacramento County Public Health or through an SCUSD sponsored vaccination site.  SCUSD will work with SCPH and all local partners to ensure that staff also have access to the mass vaccination sites.

Will SCUSD offer its own vaccination clinics?

SCUSD is partnering with local organizations to provide vaccine clinics in our community.  Please see the SCUSD vaccination website for more information. 

School districts, such as SCUSD, that operate Immunization Clinics through the Vaccine for Children (VFC) program are able to provide COVID-19 vaccine to employees. SCUSD is working with SCPH and other local partners to provide vaccinations to eligible employees and community members.

Who is SCUSD working with to provide vaccinations?

SCUSD is working in partnership with Dignity Health and other local agencies to provide vaccination clinics in our community.  Sacramento County Public Health and the California Department of Public Health Vaccines for Children (VFC) program provides free vaccines to SCUSD, such as flu vaccine and all required or recommended vaccines for schools.  During the H1N1 pandemic, SCUSD provided the H1N1 vaccine through these pre-established partnerships.  During this COVID pandemic, SCUSD will eventually have access to a COVID vaccine through these partnerships as well.

Is the COVID-19 Vaccine mandatory?

There is no mandatory vaccination requirement from the federal, state or county government. We hope that once community members find out how safe and effective the COVID-19 vaccines are, they will voluntarily opt to receive them.

What should I expect when I get the vaccine?

People trained to give the vaccine will walk you through the process. When you get your first vaccine, you will be asked to schedule your second dose. You will be monitored after you get the vaccine for any serious side effects for at least 15 minutes. You will receive a vaccine card when you get your vaccine, which will identify which kind of vaccine you got. For the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine, you need to get two doses to be fully protected. 

Do we still have to wear face coverings and keep physically distanced once vaccinated?

Yes!  Until we reach herd immunity, which is reached when approximately 70-80% of the population is immunized. Children are not yet approved to receive this vaccine.  Until this time, COVID will continue to spread throughout our community.  Wearing face coverings and practicing physical distancing are very effective at stopping the spread of COVID while we work to contain and stop the spread of COVID.

What is herd immunity?

For every person who is infected with COVID, they typically infect 2-3 more people.  If everyone around you is immune, the virus cannot be transmitted to others. Herd immunity means there are enough people in the population that are immune (about 75% of the population), which stops the spread of COVID.  Once herd immunity is reached, we will be able to resume our typical pre-COVID activities.

Is the vaccine dangerous?

Vaccine Information & Links

Flyers and Videos Resources

Minnesota Department of Health Vaccine Basics Flyer

Download in English, Spanish, Hmong, Russian, Chinese, Vietnamese and Arabic

CDC COVID-19 Vaccines Flyer

Download in English, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Russian and Vietnamese

Minnesota Department of Health Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19 Vaccinations Video

Watch in English, Spanish, Hmong, Russian, Chinese and Vietnamese

Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Video

Watch in English