Now, everyone in New York 16 years of age and older is eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine.
Currently, Pfizer, Moderna, and a one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine are available in the United States. However, only the Pfizer vaccine is currently approved for 16- and 17-year-olds.
There have been many questions about the process and about the vaccines themselves.
Dr. Alan Sanders from St. Peter's Health Partners tries to answer some of those questions and dispel a few myths. Sanders says although the younger generation typically doesn't get serious symptoms with COVID-19, they can spread it to other people and cause problems that way.
"We know that young people usually have a very good take on the vaccine, meaning they have a very good antibody production after getting vaccinated, and if they're serving as a large pool of individuals who get infected, that would be a large population of people who can affect someone else," Sanders said.
Some of you may have seen on the internet or social media concerns about the vaccine's impact on fertility.
"There's been a lot of chatter online about the vaccination, that it gets into your DNA, that it messes with your DNA, which is really the backbone of making new cells, everything from blood cells to reproductive cells. There is no evidence that the little thread of RNA, little thread of DNA that gets injected into the muscle and then produces a lot of proteins, has anything to do with an individual's changes in DNA. It doesn't last at all. After it does its job, it's destroyed by the immune system, that little hunk of DNA. In terms of long-term effects, in terms of fertility, we've seen none of that," Sanders said.
Sanders says in terms of immediate side effects from the shot, serious issues like anaphylactic shock is minuscule, between two to five for every one million doses given.
"There are side effects like pain at the site of the injection like any vaccination, aches, pains, maybe fever for a day, but that's about it. And it's proven to be a very safe vaccine overall," Sanders said.
Sanders also talks about pregnant women receiving the shot. He says as of a few weeks ago, 16,000 pregnant women were given the vaccine in the U.S., and it has had no negative impact on the pregnancies.