CUNY to Require Vaccinations for In-Person Students 

On May 10, 2021, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that the City University of New York and State University of New York will require Covid-19 vaccinations for all in-person students beginning with the Fall 2021 semester. The mandate is contingent upon full approval of the COVID-19 vaccines by the federal government, since the shots are currently being distributed under an emergency provision. Gov. Cuomo said he expected that approval to come soon. While Gov. Cuomo has mandated that all students who access campus must be vaccinated for the Fall 2021 semester, it is the CUNY Board of Trustees that sets the policy, which we expect it will do in the coming weeks. We'll keep you informed as more information becomes available.

Need a vaccine? Come to Lehman College! Lehman College is now a vaccination site offering the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, every day, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. No appointment is necessary. Head to 250 Bedford Park Boulevard West, Bronx, N.Y. The site, managed by SOMOS, is located in the APEX Center. Here's what you'll need to get the shot. 


Who’s Eligible to Receive the COVID-19 Vaccine in New York?

New York State recently announced a new expansion of COVID-19 vaccine eligibility, which means you and your loved ones could be eligible for the shot. Here’s a quick look at the updates.

  • As of May 12: 
    Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced children between ages 12 and 15 may now receive the Pfizer vaccine.
  • As of May 10:
    Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that New York would be waiving its residency requirement for vaccination. People 16 and older from out of state can now get a COVID-19 vaccine in New York.
  • As of April 23:
    Eligible individuals of all ages can walk into any vaccination site operated by New York City for a COVID-19 shot. However, if you would like to schedule an appointment ahead of time, visit https://vaccinefinder.nyc.gov/locations/664 or call (877) 829-4692.
  • As of April 6:
    New York residents ages 16 and older
  • As of March 30:
    New York residents ages 30 and older
  • As of March 23:
    New York residents ages 50 and older 

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Lehman’s Best Answer Your Vax Questions

In this Lehman College discussion and Q&A, we answer questions about the COVID-19 vaccine and put common myths to rest. The expert panel includes Sandra Lindsay '10, a nurse, Lehman alumna, and the first person in the U.S. to take the COVID-19 vaccine in a non-trial setting.

More Vaccine Facts

Can you choose which vaccine you receive? Does it cause side effects? And how long does the vaccination process take, anyway? We know you have questions about everything from the science behind the vaccine to the logistics of getting it. Northwell Health, New York State's largest healthcare provider, offers these and other helpful answers. Visit their website for more info. New Yorkers can call the New York State Vaccination Hotline at 1-833-NYS-4VAX (1-833-697-4829) with any questions.  

Why should I get the COVID-19 vaccine?

Because there is currently no cure for COVID-19, prevention is our best strategy. The development of COVID-19 vaccines is an important step in helping minimize the effects of this potentially deadly virus. Vaccines work by training your immune system to recognize and fight off the viruses and bacteria they target. By triggering an immune system response to a virus through a vaccine, your body is better equipped to destroy these disease-causing microbes in the future should you be exposed to COVID-19.

Is the COVID-19 vaccine safe and effective?

Yes. The FDA is responsible for protecting public health by ensuring the safety and efficacy of drugs, including vaccines. Learn more about the rigorous scientific and regulatory processes in place to facilitate the development and ensure the safety, effectiveness, and quality of the COVID-19 vaccines.

How was the COVID-19 vaccine developed so quickly?

Scientists began work on the COVID-19 vaccine in January 2020. Dedicated vaccine funding helped move vaccine candidates through the pre-clinical/clinical assessments and trials both quickly and thoughtfully. This has enabled researchers to advance into phase 3 clinical trials (testing the vaccine on large groups of people to evaluate safety and effectiveness) in six months instead of the typical two years. The vaccine was mass-produced before the clinical studies were complete to save time.

Can various types of COVID-19 vaccines be given to the same person?

No. If you start with one manufacturer, you’ll receive the same manufacturer for the second shot.

Will I get to choose which vaccine I receive?

Because of limited supply and complex logistics, medical professionals will determine the vaccine being administered. The CDC generally advises that you take the vaccine available to you as long as it has been issued EUA or approved by the FDA.

Does the COVID-19 vaccine cause any side effects?

Side effects are a normal sign that your body is building protection. Some people may experience more symptoms with the COVID-19 vaccine compared to other vaccinations, such as the flu shot. The second or booster dose can produce symptoms more severe than experienced with the first dose. The most common side effect is muscle soreness or aching in the arm, which will resolve without treatment. Other common side effects after vaccination may include:

  • Swelling or redness where the vaccine was administered
  • Muscle and joint achiness elsewhere
  • Low-grade fever
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Headache

These side effects are expected, not serious, and will resolve with time. If you are experiencing symptoms more serious than those described or fever continues for more than two days, contact your doctor or seek care at the nearest emergency department. Make sure you notify the vaccine administrator of these symptoms prior to your second vaccine shot.

Can the vaccine cause COVID-19?

No. The COVID-19 vaccines currently in development in the U.S., including the BioNTech/Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, DO NOT use the live virus that causes COVID-19. After receiving the vaccine, you may experience symptoms such as arm pain, low-grade fever, chills, or fatigue. This is normal, and symptoms will resolve without treatment.

How long will my COVID-19 immunity last after vaccination?

It is unknown at this time how long immunity will last; ongoing studies will help determine if repeat vaccination is needed and, if it is, how often we may need a booster. Therefore, after vaccination, you will still need to wear a mask and social distance until further notice. Factors such as how many people get vaccinated and how the virus is spreading in communities will help determine when we may be able to stop taking these extra precautions.

Is the COVID-19 vaccine safe for women who are pregnant?

Studies have not yet been done to determine if the COVID-19 vaccine is safe for a pregnant woman or her fetus. However, the vaccine is thought to be unlikely to pose a risk, according to experts from the American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists and the CDC and the independent Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). That’s because the vaccine does not contain the live virus that causes COVID-19, so it cannot give someone COVID-19, and the vaccine does not interact with or alter human DNA in the recipient.

If I had COVID-19 antibodies or recovered from COVID-19, can I get a vaccination?

Yes. You can get the COVID-19 vaccine if you’ve had the virus. We do not currently have enough information to determine if or for how long after infection someone is protected (through natural immunity) from getting COVID-19 again. Therefore, the vaccine may offer additional protection.

Please note, if you’ve had COVID-19 monoclonal antibody therapy or COVID-19 convalescent plasma, you should not receive the COVID-19 vaccine until at least 91 days following treatment.

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