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COVID-19 Vaccines

Florida Department of Health - St. Johns County

  •  904-506-6081

    Mailing Address

    200 San Sebastian View 


    Saint Augustine, Florida 32084 

Vaccine Finder

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Use the Vaccine Finder to find a COVID-19 vaccine location near you.
COVID-19 Vaccine Locater

  • Moderna & Pfizer Vaccines—How do They Work?
  • Why Get Vaccinated?
  • Myths and Facts about COVID-19 Vaccines
  • Additional Information
  • Vaccine Updates

It’s important to know that scientists had a head start making these COVID-19 vaccines.

  • Scientists at the National Institutes of Health and the University of Pennsylvania started working on these vaccines after previous coronavirus outbreaks.

  • They isolated one part of the virus—the spike. This would help them make the vaccines.

  • These COVID-19 vaccines are mRNA vaccines. Basically, they’re instructions for bodies to make examples of COVID-19 spikes.

Here's How the Vaccine Works in Your Body

  • After the vaccine, your body will build spike examples.

  • Your immune system will recognize the spikes as new and unusual.

  • Your immune system will attack the spikes.

  • While your immune system attacks, your body will remember what the spikes look like.

The Second Shot Helps the Vaccine Become Even More Effective.

  • Without vaccine, your immune system won’t be fast enough to recognize that the COVID-19 virus is bad. While your immune system desperately works to protect your body, the virus has plenty of time to spread and make you sick.

  • With vaccine, your body already knows to be on the lookout for the spike. If the virus enters your body, your immune system quickly gets to work destroying the virus.

You won’t get sick when your body builds spike examples because the spikes aren’t virus. The vaccine does NOT involve injecting you with the COVID-19 virus and it does NOT change your DNA or your genetic code.

After vaccine, you might have some side effects—they will go away in a few days. Side effects are normal signs your body is building protection. Side effects include:

  • Pain and swelling on the arm with the shot.
  • Fever, chills, tiredness and headache.

Visit for more information.

Florida Health Office of Communications

PDF Version 3-5-2021

Download PDF

View the Why Get Vaccinated Info Sheet (PDF, 418 KB)

Chanjo — [Swahili with English Subtitles]
(Video Length: 2:48)

Get Vaccinated to Protect Yourself, Your Coworkers, Your Patients, Your Family, and Your Community

  • Building defenses against COVID-19 at work and in your community is a team effort, and you are a key part of that defense.
  • Getting the COVID-19 vaccine adds one more layer of protection for you, your coworkers, and family.

It all starts with you.

Here are ways you can build people's confidence in the new COVID-19 vaccines at work, home, and in your community:

  • Get vaccinated and enroll in the v-safe text messaging program to help CDC monitor vaccine safety.
  • Tell others why you are getting vaccinated and encourage them to get vaccinated.
  • Learn how to have conversations about COVID-19 vaccine with coworkers, family, and friends.

Learn more at

Florida Health Office of Communications
PDF 12-09-20

Vaccination FAQ

Get Answers to more Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19 Vaccination Datos sobre la vacuna Covid 19

Now that there are authorized and recommended COVID-19 vaccines in the United States, accurate vaccine information is critical.

COVID-19 Vaccine Facts

(Video Length 1:21)
In Spanish: Hechos Sobre La Vacuna COVID-19

How do I know which sources of COVID-19 vaccine information are accurate?

It can be difficult to know which sources of information you can trust. Learn more about finding credible vaccine information.

Review the following facts from the CDC about COVID-19 Vaccines.

Can a COVID-19 vaccine make me sick with COVID-19?

No. 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. This means that a COVID-19 vaccine cannot make you sick with COVID-19.

COVID-19 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. These symptoms are normal and are a sign that the body is building protection against the virus that causes COVID-19. Learn more about  how COVID-19 vaccines work.

It typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity (protection against the virus that causes COVID-19) after vaccination. That means it’s possible a person could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after vaccination and still get sick. This is because the vaccine has not had enough time to provide protection.

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

COVID-19 Vaccine will not affect COVID-19 viral test results.No. None of the authorized and recommended COVID-19 vaccines  cause you to test positive on  viral tests, which are used to see if you have a  current infection.​ Neither can any of the COVID-19 vaccines currently in clinical trials in the United States.​

If your body develops an immune response to vaccination, which is the goal, you may test positive on some  antibody tests. Antibody tests indicate you had a  previous infection and that you may have some level of protection against the virus. Experts are currently looking at how COVID-19 vaccination may affect antibody testing results.

Will a COVID-19 vaccine alter my DNA?

No. COVID-19 vaccines do not change or interact with your DNA in any way.

There are currently two types of COVID-19 vaccines that have been authorized for use in the United States: messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines and viral vector vaccines. Both mRNA and viral vector COVID-19 vaccines deliver instructions (genetic material) to our cells to start building protection against the virus that causes COVID-19. However, the material never enters the nucleus of the cell, which is where our DNA is kept. This means the genetic material in the vaccines cannot affect or interact with our DNA in any way. All COVID-19 vaccines work with the body’s natural defenses to safely develop immunity to disease.

Learn more about  how COVID-19 mRNA vaccines work. ​

Learn more about how viral vector vaccines work.

Is it safe for me to get a COVID-19 vaccine if I would like to have a baby one day?

Yes.  If you are trying to become pregnant now or want to get pregnant in the future, you may receive a COVID-19 vaccine when one is available to you.

There is currently no evidence that COVID-19 vaccination causes any problems with pregnancy, including the development of the placenta. In addition, there is no evidence that fertility problems are a side effect of any vaccine, including COVID-19 vaccines.

Like all vaccines, scientists are studying COVID-19 vaccines carefully for side effects now and will continue to study them for many years.

Can CDC Mandate that I get a COVID-19 vaccine?

No. The federal government does not mandate (require) vaccination for people. Additionally, CDC does not maintain or monitor a person’s vaccination records. Whether a state or local government or employer, for example, can require or mandate COVID-19 vaccination is a matter of state or other applicable law. Please contact your state government or employer if you have other questions about COVID-19 vaccination mandates.


Learn about the V-Safe COVID-19
Vaccine Pregnancy Registry.

V-Safe | After Vaccination Health Checker | CDC.Gov

  Last Updated Apr. 15, 2021

V-Safe | After Vaccination Health Checker | CDC.Gov

For updates about the vaccine and distribution from Governor Ron DeSantis:

to  888777

Learn more about COVID-19 Vaccines in Florida 



Tell Me More About Vaccines
(Video Length 6:33)