A healthy living blog from Marshfield Clinic Health System

I received the COVID-19 vaccine. Now what?

Editor’s note: This article is subject to change. Please visit Centers for Disease Control and Prevention site for more information about when you have been fully vaccinated.

CDC continues to update guidelines for people who are fully vaccinated for COVID-19.

The COVID-19 vaccine is available to help protect you from getting sick. Many people are getting the COVID-19 vaccine to protect themselves and the ones they love. They also want to start doing things that were stopped because of the pandemic.

Marshfield Clinic Health System has several options to schedule your COVID-19 vaccine appointment. You can visit marshfieldclinic.org/covidvaccine, self-schedule online using My Marshfield Clinic, visit a walk-in clinic near you or call 877-998-0880.

What does it mean to be fully vaccinated?

According to CDC, people are considered fully vaccinated:

  • Two weeks after their second dose in a two-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or
  • Two weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine

If you don’t meet these requirements, you are not fully vaccinated.

What can I do if I am fully vaccinated?

If you have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19, you can resume activities that you did before the pandemic, including:

  • You can resume activities without wearing a mask or staying 6 feet apart, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.
  • If you travel in the United States, you do not need to get tested before or after travel, or self-quarantine after travel.
  • You should still pay attention to the situation at your international destination before traveling outside of the U.S. You do not need to self-quarantine after arriving in the U.S., but you should get tested 3-5 days after international travel.

Do I need to quarantine if I am fully vaccinated?

If you have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and were in close contact with someone with COVID-19, you do not need to quarantine or be tested if you meet the following criteria:

  • Your close contact to someone with COVID-19 happened at least two weeks after getting the last dose of your vaccine series.
  • You have not had any symptoms of COVID-19 since your close contact.

Department of Health Services recommends continuing to monitor your symptoms for 14 days after your close contact. If you develop any symptoms of COVID-19, isolate from others, contact your health provider and get tested.

However, if you live in a group setting (like a correctional or detention facility or group home) and are around someone who has COVID-19, you should still stay away from others for 14 days and get tested, even if you don’t have symptoms.

Exceptions to updated mask guidance

While the CDC did release updated guidance stating that fully vaccinated individuals can resume activities they did prior to the pandemic without wearing a mask or distancing – there are important exceptions to be aware of.

These exceptions to the updated guidelines include:

  • Health care settings
  • K-12 Schools
  • Indoor areas with substantial or high transmission of COVID-19
  • Places where masks are required by local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including: local businesses and workplaces
  • Residents and employees of correctional and detention facilities and homeless shelters
  • Travelers on all planes, buses, trains, and other forms of public transportation traveling into, within, or out of the United States and in U.S. transportation hubs such as airports and stations

Note: If your immune system may be weakened due to a condition or medications, you may NOT be fully protected even if you are fully vaccinated. Talk to your healthcare provider. Even after vaccination, you may need to continue taking all precautions.

Sign up for v-safe

After receiving your vaccination, register for v-safe. The smartphone-based tool personalizes health check-ins, allows you to report side effects, and reminders you to get your second dose. Follow instructions on the v-safe handout your health care provider gave you after vaccination.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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