What to Know About the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine

Apicha Community Health Center Jan 07, 2021  

Apicha CHC vaccine -iStock-1282928817

As vaccinations continue around New York City and the country, it's important to have all the information you need before getting vaccinated. In this blog, we're going to break down everything you need to know about the Moderna vaccine. From steps you should take before vaccination to following guidelines, we have you covered. 

What is the Moderna vaccine? 

The Moderna vaccine is an FDA-approved vaccine to help protect against COVID-19. Like the Pfizer vaccine, the Moderna vaccine is now being used to vaccinate individuals across the country. 

Important things to tell your vaccine provider before you are vaccinated

It's highly recommended you tell your vaccine provider about any and all health conditions before getting vaccinated. This includes if you:

  • Have allergies. 
  • Have a fever.
  • Have a bleeding disorder or are on blood thinners.
  • Are immunocompromised or are on a medicine that affects your immune system. 
  • Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. 
  • Are breastfeeding.
  • Have received another COVID-19 vaccine.
Who should get the Moderna vaccine?

The FDA has authorized the emergency use of the Moderna vaccine in individuals age 18 and older. 

Who should NOT get the Moderna vaccine?

You should not get the Moderna vaccine if you:

  • Had a severe allergic reaction after a previous dose of this vaccine.
  • Had a severe allergic reaction to any ingredients of this vaccine. 
What are the ingredients in the Moderna vaccine?

The Moderna COVID-19 vaccine contains the following ingredients: messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA), lipids (SM-102, polyethylene glycol [PEG] 200 dimyristoyl glycerol [DMG], cholesterol, and 1,2-distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine [DSPC]), tromethamine, tromethamine hydrochloride, acetic acid, sodium acetate, and sucrose.

How is the Moderna vaccine given?

The Moderna vaccine will be given to you as an injection in the muscle. The vaccination series is two doses given one month apart. If you receive one dose of the vaccine, you should receive the second dose of the same vaccine one month apart to complete the vaccination series. 

What are the benefits of the Moderna vaccine? 

In clinical trials, the Moderna vaccine has been shown to prevent COVID-19 following two doses given one month apart. 

What are the risks of the Moderna vaccine?

There are a few side effects that have been reported from the Moderna vaccine:

  • Injection site reactions: pain, tenderness and swelling of the lymph node in the same arm of the injection, swelling (hardness), and redness. 
  • General side effects: fatigue, headache, muscle pain, joint pain, chills, nausea and vomiting, and fever. 

There is a remote chance the Moderna vaccine could cause a severe allergic reaction. A severe allergic reaction would usually occur within a few minutes to one hour after getting a dose of the Moderna vaccine. For this reason, your vaccination provider may ask you to stay at the place where you received the vaccine for monitoring after vaccination.  Signs of a severe allergic reaction can include:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Swelling of the face and throat
  • A fast heartbeat
  • A rash all over your body
  • Dizziness and weakness

These may not be all the possible side effects of the Moderna vaccine. 

What should I do about side effects?

If you experience a severe allergic reaction, call 911 or go to a hospital closest to you. You should also contact your vaccination provider if you have any side effects that do not go away. 

You can report vaccine side effects to the FDA/CDC Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting Systems (VAERS). The VAERS toll-free number is 1-800-822-7967. You can also report online at vaers.hhs.gov/reportevent.html. Please include "Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine EUA in the first line of box #18 in the report form. You can also text side effects to Moderna TX, Inc. at 1-866-MODERNA.

What if I decide not to get the Moderna vaccine? 

It is up to you if you want to be vaccinated. 

Will the Moderna vaccine give me COVID-19? 

No. The Moderna vaccine will not give you COVID-19 and does not contain SARS-CoV-2.

Your vaccination card

After you receive your first dose of the vaccine, you will be given a vaccination card to show when you should return for your second dose. Do not lose it, and remember to bring it with you when you get your second dose. 

Learn more about COVID-19, vaccine, and more

If you'd like to learn more about COVID-19, vaccines, or have other questions, you can use the resources below:


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