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COVID-19 vaccines: Finding your reason why

A woman with a serious expression stands in front of urban buildings.

July 26, 2021—If you've been on the fence about getting a COVID-19 vaccine, you're not alone. It's always a good idea to carefully consider your options before making a decision that will affect your health. And it's understandable if you've had concerns.

But a lot has changed since the vaccines were introduced. So now might be a good time to take a fresh look at your reasons for holding off.

Here are five reasons people are choosing to take the next step now and get a COVID-19 shot:

1. The vaccines have a good track record. All of the COVID-19 vaccines were tested thoroughly in clinical trials to make sure they were safe. And now we have real-world data to back up what the trials said: The vaccines work. Millions of people have now been safely vaccinated. The side effects for almost everyone are minor. And the risks are low—especially compared to the risks of getting COVID-19.

2. It's easier now to get a vaccine. Many pharmacies and doctors' offices now have COVID-19 vaccines on hand. You may even be able to get a shot without an appointment. Vaccines.gov can help you find a provider near you.

3. Unvaccinated people are more likely to get COVID-19. Most of the people now being hospitalized with COVID-19 haven't had their shots. And it's often groups who are more vulnerable to serious illness, such as people of color, who are being left behind. You have the right to protect yourself.

4. The vaccines are effective against the Delta variant. This strain of the coronavirus spreads more easily and may be resistant to some treatments. The vaccines offer good protection against Delta and other variants. And they reduce the risk that you will get seriously sick if you do get COVID-19.

5. Vaccines are strongly recommended for eligible schoolkids. If your kids are nervous about their shots, you can show them that the vaccines are safe by getting yours at the same time or telling them about when you did.

It's important to feel comfortable about any medical decision you make for yourself or your family. If you have questions about the COVID-19 vaccines, the best idea is to talk to your doctor. Together, you can discuss your concerns. And your doctor can help answer any questions you have about what's right for you.

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