The Medina County Health Department has been incredibly busy keeping the community up-to-date on the latest COVID-19 information. We reached out to health commissioner Krista Wasowski to answer some of your COVID-19 and vaccination questions.
1) When the general public gets to be vaccinated, will the general public have a choice between Pfizer or Moderna and why/why not?
“When people call to schedule, they can ask which vaccine the provider will be using for their appointment. When you receive your vaccination, the provider will give a written card that documents the date and verifies the brand you received. It is important that both doses are from the same manufacturer.”
2) Does getting the COVID-19 vaccine ensure you will not get the virus? Or does getting the vaccine mean it will simply lessen your symptoms/shorten the length of your illness should you get COVID-19?
“The mRNA from current COVID-19 vaccines can most easily be described as a set of instructions for your body on how to make a harmless piece of “spike protein” to allow our immune systems to recognize that this protein doesn’t belong there and begin building an immune response and making antibodies. Essentially, COVID-19 vaccines that use mRNA work with the body’s natural defenses to safely develop immunity to the virus, giving your cells a blueprint of how to make antibodies. The vaccine does not prevent you from getting the virus, but it prepares your body to respond.”
You can learn more about how COVID-19 mRNA vaccines work here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/different-vaccines/mrna.html
3) Will schools and employers be able to force students/employees to get the vaccine?
“No. Vaccination for COVID-19 is voluntary.”
4) We talk a lot about prevention of COVID-19, but not a lot about what someone can do if they are sick with COVID-19. We are hearing from those sick with the virus to take vitamins C, D and zinc — and to also do smell therapy. Can you talk about this angle?
“I would refer your listeners to their trusted medical provider for this information.”
5) Any idea an approximate time frame for when the vaccine will be rolled out to the general public (spring, summer, fall, next winter)?
“Rollout to the general public is dependent on vaccine availability. If a third option becomes available and is easier to manage, I anticipate vaccine being even more broadly available at physician offices, etc.”
6) I’m hearing teachers will be next to get the vaccine. Is that true? Also, what category do funeral directors fall in? Will they be considered in the next round?
“Yes, teachers are contained within the group of those eligible beginning Feb. 1. Funeral directors are not listed by Ohio within 1B at this time and the state has not announced additional groups beyond 65+. This is the link for the definitions of critical infrastructure/essential worker. You can see how encompassing this list is. Each state is considering the amount of vaccine available and making decisions on phases that are unique to their state.”
For vaccine questions, you can call the Medina County Health Department at 330-723-9688 or get your scheduling questions and information here: COVID vaccination scheduling