Life After Vaccine


Reprinted from Washington State Coronavirus Response (Covid-19)

Just got your vaccine? Watch this video to learn what to expect over the next few days:


Every day, more of us across Washington are getting the COVID-19 vaccine. The really good news is that once you’re fully vaccinated, you can start doing some of the activities you had stopped doing because of the pandemic.

However, we also need to be mindful that others are still at risk.  

Think of it this way:  If you’re fully vaccinated, the vaccine protects you from severe COVID-19 symptoms. To protect others, you still need to wear a mask, stay 6 feet (2 meters) apart, and avoid crowds and indoor spaces without open windows. That’s because we don’t know enough yet about whether the vaccine prevents the spread of COVID-19 from one person to another.

What does “fully vaccinated” mean?

You are considered fully vaccinated for COVID-19 two weeks after you get your second shot if you had to get two doses (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna), or two weeks after you get a single-dose vaccine (Johnson and Johnson (J&J)/Janssen).

Once you’re fully vaccinated, you:

  • Can visit with other fully vaccinated people without physical distancing or wearing masks except in crowded settings like sporting events or public indoor settings like grocery stores.

  • Can visit with people who haven’t been vaccinated and are from one other household who are all at low risk for severe COVID-19 illness – indoors without physical distancing and wearing masks.

  • Can travel domestically without a pre- or post-travel test. And you don’t need to quarantine.

  • Do not need to quarantine or get tested after being exposed to someone with COVID-19 if you have no symptoms.

  • Should treat your vaccination paper card like a birth certificate or other official document! Take a photo of it and then store it at home. In the future, you may need to prove you’re vaccinated against COVID-19. Even now, many businesses are offering perks to vaccinated people.

Gathering Safely Once Vaccinated >>

Even if you’re fully vaccinated, you should still:

  • Wear a well-fitted mask and physically distance in crowded settings or any public indoor spaces.

  •  Avoid medium or large gatherings.

  • Wear masks, stay 6 feet (2 meters) apart, and keep gatherings small and outdoors (or indoors with the windows open) when you are visiting with people who are not vaccinated and are at a risk of severe COVID-19 illness.

  • Get tested if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

  •  Follow guidance from your employer, school, or place of residence.

  •  Follow CDC and health department travel recommendations.

  •  Keep an official proof of vaccination with you. See examples here:  Proof of Vaccination (PDF)

Life After Vaccine FAQs >>

If you’re not yet fully vaccinated:

  • Wear a well-fitted mask and stay 6 feet (2 meters) apart in all public places.

  •  Keep gatherings small and outdoors or indoors with the windows open.

  • Wear masks and stay 6 feet (2 meters) apart if you’re gathering with other people who are not yet vaccinated.

  •  If no one in your household is at high risk for severe COVID-19 illness, you can visit without masks and physical distance with one fully vaccinated household at a time.

  • Get tested for COVID-19 if you’re experiencing symptoms or know you’ve been exposed to someone with COVID-19.

  • Continue to avoid travel unless it is essential. If you do travel, get tested for COVID-19 before and after traveling and quarantine for seven days after traveling.

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