Common questions and answers about the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine

The time between the first confirmed COVID-19 case to the deployment of a vaccine took a little less than a year, which has created some questions surrounding the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

Posted: Dec 14, 2020 11:11 PM
Updated: Dec 15, 2020 9:11 AM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) -- The time between the first confirmed COVID-19 case to the deployment of a vaccine took a little less than a year, which has created some questions surrounding the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

Brian Dixon, Ph.D, Director of Public Health Informatics at the Regenstrief Institute, the same organizations that is helping the Indiana State Department of Health with the fight against COVID-19 says despite the vaccine being available quickly, it’s safe and effective.

"The vaccine data shows extremely promising results. It’s about 95 percent effective after the second dose, meaning that only less than five percent of people who receive the dose during the clinical trials developed COVID-19 or any kind of severe outcomes from covid-19," Dixon said.

The Pfizer vaccine comes in two doses, taken about three weeks apart. The first is to prepare your immune system to fight the disease with the second to boost immunity. 

Dixon says according to data from Pfizer, even the first doses show to be fairly effective just a short time after being given.

"It look like the vaccine is highly effective after about seven days from taking that first dose. That it may be as high as 75 or 80 percent effective just from the first dose."

Dixon says though that to be fully effective, people need to get both doses from the same manufacturer.

Even if you’ve already had COVID-19, Dixon says immunity against the virus may only last about three months.

Dixon said, "We do recommend that individuals who’ve had COVID-19 consider getting the vaccine because the vaccine is designed in such a way that you might actually be able to develop better immunity from the vaccine than you would naturally getting COVID-19."

This vaccine is designed in a way that does not give the recipient COVID-19 but prepares the body to fight it off.

Some people may still experience minor side effects from the vaccine and the risk of people contracting serious side effects is very low.

However, with the vaccine only being about 95 percent effective, that means five percent of people who get the vaccine could still develop COVID-19, which is why Dixon says it’s still important to keep doing what we’re doing until the vaccine is available to everyone.

"We still need to be following good hand hygiene, and mask-wearing, and social distancing over the next several months, probably until summer.”

To read the full FDA briefing by Pfizer regarding their COVID-19 vaccine, click here.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 918230

Reported Deaths: 15011
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1252491952
Lake623371084
Allen52301746
Hamilton43009443
St. Joseph41155584
Elkhart32831485
Vanderburgh29698436
Tippecanoe26442247
Johnson23106414
Hendricks21708338
Porter21255340
Clark16988222
Madison16899378
Vigo15562272
Monroe14186190
LaPorte13961235
Delaware13613215
Howard13531258
Kosciusko11150134
Hancock10534159
Warrick10431174
Bartholomew10233166
Floyd10099202
Wayne9557216
Grant8858194
Morgan8654158
Boone8231109
Dubois7521123
Henry7391126
Dearborn734186
Noble7208100
Marshall7168127
Cass7060117
Lawrence6803150
Jackson638980
Shelby6386106
Gibson5999105
Harrison587984
Huntington586490
Montgomery5663101
DeKalb555691
Knox532999
Miami523183
Clinton522464
Putnam519067
Whitley509851
Steuben480267
Wabash470192
Jasper465760
Jefferson456091
Ripley439074
Adams435565
Daviess4008106
Scott389563
White383457
Decatur376895
Clay376455
Greene375589
Wells375183
Fayette363074
Posey351841
Jennings341756
Washington324046
LaGrange312074
Spencer310734
Fountain306553
Randolph302087
Sullivan294947
Owen275961
Orange269659
Starke268961
Fulton264451
Jay248134
Perry244950
Carroll239926
Franklin229337
Vermillion225850
Rush225530
Parke212020
Tipton205354
Pike200938
Blackford163834
Pulaski155250
Crawford140818
Benton138316
Newton138141
Brown130646
Martin124416
Switzerland122310
Warren112616
Union92211
Ohio75811
Unassigned0461

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1319265

Reported Deaths: 21265
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1480641537
Cuyahoga1311202313
Hamilton948871307
Montgomery647451122
Summit548531041
Lucas49502853
Butler45993649
Stark39954963
Lorain30438525
Warren29170326
Mahoning25988629
Clermont24726278
Lake24088411
Delaware21722140
Licking19822239
Fairfield19780218
Greene19671266
Medina19208285
Trumbull19195506
Clark17188321
Portage15585224
Richland15540228
Wood15187208
Allen13654254
Miami13283244
Muskingum11821148
Wayne11448234
Columbiana11100239
Tuscarawas10388264
Marion10273144
Pickaway10162128
Scioto9766124
Erie9479170
Ross8979172
Lawrence8225116
Hancock8105140
Ashtabula8083184
Geauga7976155
Belmont7791183
Jefferson7093168
Huron7087125
Union703549
Washington6823116
Athens666163
Sandusky6608132
Darke6394135
Knox6308120
Seneca6113135
Auglaize569888
Ashland5631110
Shelby555799
Mercer545188
Brown533067
Defiance5278100
Madison527368
Crawford5148113
Highland514876
Fulton508781
Clinton505379
Logan494582
Preble4788110
Putnam4733106
Guernsey439057
Williams437281
Champaign426463
Ottawa425783
Perry414051
Jackson402259
Pike367140
Morrow359149
Fayette353951
Coshocton345064
Hardin341868
Adams338864
Gallia329254
Holmes3148107
Henry312668
Van Wert299269
Hocking280467
Wyandot271858
Carroll250451
Paulding231742
Meigs197842
Monroe178649
Noble160340
Morgan153528
Harrison145740
Vinton130217
Unassigned05
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