Answering Questions on the COVID-19 Vaccines

Thursday, April 01, 2021

Currently, there are three different COVID-19 vaccines available to South Carolinians. In addition to continuing to wear a masks in public, social distancing, and washing your hands regularly, getting vaccinated is one of the most important steps we can take to help end the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Who Can get Vaccinated?

As of March 31st, 2021, everyone in South Carolina ages 16 and up can receive a COVID-19 vaccine. To view the complete list of eligibility please visit: https://scdhec.gov/covid19/covid-19-vaccine

 


 

What Vaccines are Currently Available?

In the United States only three vaccines have been approved for emergency use by the FDA. The vaccines are:

  • Pfizer-BioNTech
  • Moderna
  • Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen

 


 

What the Differences in the Vaccines Available?  

Pfizer-BioNTec and Moderna

The Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines are mRNA (Messenger RNA) vaccines. mRNA is genetic material that tells your body how to make proteins. The COVID-19 virus has spike proteins, and the mRNA in the vaccines available teach your cells how to make copies of these spike proteins. When and if you are exposed to the real virus later after you have been fully vaccinated, your body will recognize it and know how to fight it off.

Fast Facts:

Pfizer-BioNTec

  • 2 shots, 21 days apart
  • Shot in the muscle of the upper arm
  • Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was 95% effective at preventing laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 illness

 

Moderna

  • 2 shots, 28 days apart
  • Shot in the muscle of the upper arm
  • Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was 94.1% effective at preventing laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 illness

 


 

Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen

The Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen COVID-19 vaccine is a viral vector vaccine. A viral vector vaccine uses a different safe virus, called a “vector,” to give your body the information it needs to protect you. The Johnson and Johnson Janssen vaccine teaches your body how to make copies of COVID-19’s spike proteins so if you are exposed to the real virus later after you have been fully vaccinated, your body will recognize the virus and know how to fight it off.

Fast Facts:

Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen

  • 1 shot
  • Shot in the muscle of the upper arm
  • 66.3% effective in clinical trials at preventing laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 illness

 


 

Where Can I Get my Vaccine?

SCDHEC has created at vaccine finder tool at https://vaxlocator.dhec.sc.gov/. Vaccines are now available at many pharmacies in the state such as CVS, Walgreens, and Walmart. You must however go online or call to schedule your appointment.