Vaccine Information for Employees
The first vaccines for COVID-19 have received emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration. Here is what you need to know as a Mount Sinai faculty or staff member.
As of now, in accordance with New York State Department of Health (DOH) guidelines, we are offering vaccination to all Mount Sinai employees who are required to be onsite in all facilities, as well as employees working remotely who are 16 or over and live in New York State. Click “Schedule Your Vaccine” above to be put on the waiting list and we will contact you as soon as we have vaccine available. (Updated 4/6/21)
Please note that you must get your second dose at the same location where you got your first. This is a DOH requirement and is necessary to ensure that the right quantities of doses are available at each location. We ask that you please schedule your second dose at the same Mount Sinai “pod” where you received your first.
For more details, please refer to the following resources. These will be updated frequently.
- Pfizer Fact Sheet for Patients - Updated March 1, 2021
- Moderna Fact Sheet for Patients - Updated December 22, 2020
- Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) Fact Sheet for Patients - Updated March 1, 2021
- Talking Points: COVID-19 Vaccines - Updated April 6, 2021
- Frequently Asked Questions About COVID-19 Vaccines - public-facing vaccine site
- Talking Points for Patients Calling With Vaccine-Related Questions - Updated April 6, 2021
- Vaccine-Related Documents for the Public
- Angela Bianco, MD, on the COVID-19 vaccines and pregnancy
- There are a lot of myths on the internet about COVID-19 vaccines. Mount Sinai is working with a company called NewsGuard to provide the most accurate information. If you’ve heard something that sounds questionable and want to know if it’s true or not, you can look it up in NewsGuard’s report on the top COVID-19 vaccine myths.
- COVID-19 Employee Vaccination FAQs (printable version) - Updated April 6, 2021
- Learning the Facts: Undoing Myths About the COVID-19 Vaccines - Updated December 24, 2020
- COVID-19 Vaccine And The Black Community: A Tyler Perry Special - Updated January 28, 2021
No. It is NOT possible to get COVID-19 from any of the vaccines that have received emergency use authorization or are in advanced clinical trials.
Vaccines expose us to pieces of either a bacteria or a virus. Our body mounts an immune response by making antibodies against those pieces. Antibodies are proteins that fight germs like viruses and bacteria by latching onto and disabling them. The goal is that our body will then recognize those pieces and use the antibodies to fight off any future exposure to the real bacteria or virus.
There are several different types of vaccines.
Traditional vaccines include pieces of the virus in them. This causes your immune system to react by making antibodies against those pieces.
The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are called “messenger RNA” vaccines. They do not contain pieces or proteins from the virus. Instead, they contain instructions for your cells, called “messenger RNA.” This messenger RNA tells your cells to make the COVID-19 spike protein themselves. Once your cells make the spike protein, your immune system will make the antibodies that fight COVID-19 and protect you from getting sick from this virus.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine also instructs your cells to make the COVID-19 spike protein themselves, but it delivers those instructions by using a harmless adenovirus, similar to a common cold virus, rather than using messenger RNA.
We will let you know when it is your turn to get vaccinated. Initially, we will not be able to vaccinate everyone, but over time our goal is to offer vaccine to all Mount Sinai employees.
We strongly encourage all Mount Sinai Health System faculty, staff, trainees, and students to get the vaccine as soon as they are eligible. However, at this time, it is not mandatory. That may change as the pandemic progresses—and as we get guidance from federal, state and city health agencies—but for now, COVID-19 vaccination is not mandatory.
Yes. Voluntary physicians will be included at the appropriate time based on state prioritization guidelines.
Vaccination status will not affect your work assignment. We did not change any work assignments based on COVID-19 antibody status and will not do so based on whether or not you are vaccinated.
When you get vaccinated, we will cover for you on your unit for the time that the vaccination appointment takes. We will be scheduling vaccinations in a staggered manner to make sure that all units have appropriate coverage during this time.
It is common to have side effects after a vaccination. They mean your immune system is working and making antibodies as it’s supposed to. Most of the side effects reported with COVID-19 vaccines are mild and go away quickly, especially with over-the-counter pain medicines.
If you experience side effects that are strong enough to interfere with work, please take a PTO day.
As of now, in accordance with New York State Department of Health (DOH) guidelines, we are offering vaccination to all Mount Sinai employees who are required to be onsite in all facilities, and to those who work remotely who live in New York State and are 16 or over. (Updated 4/9/2021)
No. The vaccine will be provided to you at no cost.
Yes, they will be able to get the vaccine. The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) will decide how COVID-19 vaccines are distributed and when high risk-patients like your family members can be vaccinated. We must follow those DOH guidelines and will not be able to make exceptions to them.
We encourage you to take the vaccine you are offered and not wait for another vaccine to become available.
What support will the hospital system provide should anyone have a significant adverse event as a result of the vaccination?
Like with any vaccine, any unexpected or adverse events will be reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). Both the NYSDOH and MSHS have systems in place to support the health of our employees.
Will there be an MD on site where vaccines are administered? Will there be medicines for anaphylaxis or other severe reactions nearby?
The staff at the vaccination site will be prepared to attend to any emergency including a rare allergic reaction or anaphylaxis.
Once you've received the vaccine, do you stay behind for a brief monitoring for any immediate reaction?
Yes. After receiving the vaccine, you will be asked to stay for a short period of time so that we can monitor you for any reactions to the vaccine.