Are there any serious side effects of receiving the COVID-19 vaccine?

Decades of vaccine research demonstrates that most serious side effects generally  occur within six weeks of administering a vaccine. For the COVID-19 vaccines, the FDA has required clinical trials to provide data from eight weeks of safety monitoring following the second dose before considering the authorization of a vaccine for public use. 

Because these are new vaccines, researchers will be learning more about rare side effects, if any, over the next year. To identify side effects that happen only very rarely (e.g., once in 50,000 doses), hundreds of thousands of people need to be vaccinated and followed over time. The FDA and CDC will continue to closely monitor vaccine safety as the public begins using a new vaccine.

Both agencies have both longstanding and new safety systems in place for heightened monitoring of all COVID-19 vaccines. Learn more about the vaccine safety monitoring systems.

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