HOUSTON — KHOU 11 is finding the experts to answer your questions about the coronavirus vaccines.
The first round of vaccinations is expected to be right around the corner, but some people are skeptical.
As we found out, viewers still have lots of questions.
We asked Dr. Catherine Troisi, UT Health’s School of Public Health infectious disease epidemiologist, to help us answer your questions.
Question 1: How long will the vaccine protect you?
“That’s a really good question,” Troisi said. “We’re not sure, because the vaccines haven’t been around long enough to tell. Are they going to last a year, two years, a lifetime? Based on evidence, we believe protection will last at least six months. It may be longer. With other coronaviruses that cause colds, protection seems to last about a year.”
Question 2: Do you still have to wear a mask around other people after you’ve gotten a vaccine?
“The answer to that, unfortunately, is yes,” Troisi said. “First of all, you’re not sure you’re protected. The vaccines are 95-percent effective more or less, but that leaves five-percent that are not going to have immunity after vaccination.”
Question 3: Can you take the flu shot and the COVID-19 vaccine in the same month?
“We don’t know the answer to that, because we haven’t looked at that yet,” Troisi said. “You should check with your healthcare provider, of course. My instinct is that you may be able to get the COVID vaccine and the flu vaccine a couple of weeks apart. So if you haven’t gotten your flu shot, go and get it. The COVID vaccine won’t be out for others for a couple of months, so go get your flu vaccine.”