To all the COVID Vaccine FAQs amidst persistent indecision!

5 min readMay 25, 2021

Ever since the government announced that the people in the age group of 18–45 are eligible to get vaccinated, there has been a lot of chaos and confusion amidst the public. Refer to the following FAQs to get the right information.

Things went haywire with the arrival of the second wave of COVID. With new variants around, vaccination is the only way to protect yourself. India has approved two vaccines- Covishield and Covaxin. The vaccination started on January 16 for the frontline workers, followed by the citizens in the age group of 45+. Now, as the inoculation drive has started for 18+ citizens, you must have a few questions. Let’s clear them for once and for all.

What technology has been used in vaccines approved for India?

Covaxin has been developed by Bharat Biotech, a Hyderabad-based company in collaboration with the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) and the National Institute of Virology. It uses the inactivated form of the Coronavirus, which inhibits the multiplication of the virus in the body and builds our immunity to fight it.

Covishield, on the other hand, is developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca, a UK-based pharmaceutical company. It is manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII). It’s a viral vector vaccine that delivers spike proteins and induces a protective immune response using the Chimpanzee adenovirus ChAD0x1.

How to register for the vaccination?

1. Go to CoWIN and click on the register/sign-in option.
2. Enter your mobile number and generate OTP.
3. Enter the OTP and verify it.
4. Once done, register yourself by providing the required information such as your name, age, gender, and uploading a photo ID.
5. Click on “Register” and then go to the “Schedule” option.
6. Enter your zip code or select your state and district from the list.
7. Next, choose your preferred vaccination location, date, and time. Click on “Confirm” and you’re done.

You can also register on the Aarogya Setu app.
● Go to the app and click on CoWIN.
● Select vaccination login/register options.
● Enter your mobile number and generate OTP. Then follow the same steps as on the CoWIN website.

Can I register on the spot at the vaccine center?

No, on-the-spot registration is not allowed for those in the age group of 18–45. This facility is only available to those above the age of 45. You’ll have to register on the CoWIN portal or the Aarogya Setu app for an appointment.

Can I choose the vaccine I will receive?

People who are in the age group of 18–45 years can choose their preferred vaccine. The CoWIN portal will show the vaccine type and their prices as available at the private vaccination centers. This facility is not available for the government centers.

How long does it take for the vaccine to work?

It usually takes 2–3 weeks after the completion of the vaccination process for the body to build immunity against the virus. However, people can still get infected after getting vaccinated. Therefore, It’s mandatory to wear masks, use sanitizers and follow social distancing measures at all times.

What are the side effects of the vaccine?

As per the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the common side effects of vaccines are mild headaches, pain or swelling at the injection site, mild fever, and irritability.
You may also experience fatigue, myalgia, malaise, pyrexia, cold, cough, chills and arthralgia, nausea.

Is it necessary to receive the same vaccine during the second dose?

It is mandatory to receive the second dose of the same vaccine as the first one. The vaccines are NOT interchangeable.

What is the gap between the two doses?

The second dose of Covaxin can be taken after four to six weeks. However, the government recently has extended the gap between two doses of the Covishield vaccine from 12 to 16 weeks.

Do I need to take any preventive measures after taking the vaccine?

The health officials ask you to rest for at least half an hour at the vaccination site. During this time, they monitor you to make sure you don’t develop any severe allergic reaction (anaphylactic shock). If you feel any discomfort or uneasiness, immediately inform the nearest health authorities or /ANM/ASHA.

Can I get vaccinated with the second dose in a different State/District?

Yes, you can get the second dose in a different state/district. However, make sure that the facility has the same vaccine as was administered to you in the first dose.

Which documents do I have to carry to the vaccination site?

You need to carry your identification proof with which you registered on the CoWIN website. Click here for the list of documents that can be used to register. Also, take the printout/screenshot of your appointment.

Note: Following your first dose of vaccine, you will be given a provisional certificate with a QR code. A final certificate will be issued to you after the second dose. You will also receive an SMS on your phone with the link to download the certificate.

We hope we answered most of your questions. Get yourself vaccinated as soon as possible and protect yourself and those you love from the virus. Stay home, stay safe!

Read Not sure of the COVID-19 Vaccine? Here are some biggest Myths and Fears busted! You can also check out our blogs on various topics.

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