UK HealthCare

COVID Vaccines: Your Questions Answered

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 8, 2021) – More than 700,000 people across Kentucky are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, after receiving both doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines. The number continues to grow each day, especially as the rollout of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine began last week.

At UK HealthCare, hundreds of medical, professional and volunteer personnel are part of the collective effort making this possible.

The COVID-19 vaccines were created faster than any other in history. While it may seem that the process was rushed, Brooke Hudspeth, Pharm.D., associate professor, UK College of Pharmacy’s Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science, said the technology to develop the vaccines has been around for many years. Still, questions and uncertainty surrounding their safety and efficacy remain.

Hudspeth is a medication expert with a background in leading pharmacy immunization efforts. She practiced in community pharmacy and worked with Kroger Health before joining UK faculty.

“Every step, especially considering safety and efficacy was followed in the creation of the Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccines,” Hudspeth said. “If you have the opportunity to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, I recommend you take it.”

Hudspeth is breaking down the most common questions surrounding COVID-19 vaccines. For more information about resources available, check out the UK College of Pharmacy’s guide to understanding COVID-19 vaccines.

Remember, while a vaccine is intended to boost immune response, you cannot automatically consider yourself “safe” just because you are vaccinated. Vaccines do not always prevent you from getting infected. Rather, they lessen the severity of the infection by helping your immune system respond. You can still get infected, and you may still transmit disease. It is important to continue wearing a mask and practicing social distancing.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.