The Kern County Public Health Department opened its COVID-19 Mass Vaccination site at the Kern County Fairgrounds Wednesday morning. The site is currently in its first phase of a four-phase roll out plan. Currently, the site is administering 500 vaccines a day. With this site, the end goal is to vaccinate 920,000 people twice.
Based on California’s COVID-19 Vaccine Plan, those eligible to make an appointment for a vaccine include those in Phase 1A and those 65 years of age and older are eligible for vaccination. The County is seeing patients by appointment only. To make an appointment call 661-868-0165.
While preparing for getting vaccinated or considering getting vaccinated, here are 10 facts from state and local public health departments about the COVID-19 vaccine and COVID-19.
- There have been more than 3,000,000 COVID-19 cases in California alone and more than 91,000 in Kern County.
- COVID-19 can be contracted as easily as just standing too close to someone who is sneezing or coughing around you, or through surface level contact. People can also contract COVID-19 by touching one’s face. Health officials are stressing the important of washing your hands thoroughly and wearing a mask.
- You can have COVID-19 with little to no symptoms. The virus can still be passed from someone who is asymptomatic.
- For people who have contracted COVID-19 should isolate for at least 10 days after the first day of symptoms. If the person’s symptoms continue, isolation can go up to 20 days. If someone is asymptomatic, they should be quarantined for 10 days after the first COVID-19 positive test.
- While most symptoms tend to go away, some people do report long lasting symptoms attacking different parts of the body such as:
- Pain in chest and joints
- Problems sleeping, smelling or tasting
- Shortness of breath
- Difficulty thinking or concentrating
- The vaccines were authorized under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
- There are currently three types of vaccines for the virus: Messenger RNA (mRNA), Protein subunit, and Vector. Each Vaccine contains either a version of a virus or part of a virus so your body can learn how to recognize it and fight it.
- The mRNA is a type of vaccine that instructs the body to make a protein that is found on the surface of the virus. The protein is harmless and after the cells have built the protein the immune system will fight it off and be able to fight off further infections. The vaccine is given in the upper arm muscle. Pfizer and Moderna are both mRNA vaccines.
- The Protein subunit vaccine contains proteins from the virus. Once the immune system recognizes the proteins it will start building antibodies needed to fight against it if ever infected with the virus.
- The Viral Vector vaccine does not have part of the COVID-19 virus but a weak version of a different live virus. This virus is harmless and will make a harmless piece of the virus that does cause COVID-19. Similar to the mRNA this protein is only found on the surface of the coronavirus and will teach the immune system how to fight it.