What to expect at a COVID-19 vaccine clinic

(En Français)

Before getting the vaccine


  • Wear a short-sleeve shirt or top with sleeves that are easy to roll up. 
  • To prevent feeling faint while being vaccinated, have something to eat before coming to the clinic. It is also important to drink water and stay hydrated. 
  • Bring a mask to wear while you’re in the building. 
  • Bring your health card and vaccine record, if you have them.
  • All clinics are wheelchair accessible

Please do not come to the clinic if you are not feeling well. You will be turned away and will need to reschedule your appointment.

After getting the vaccine


  • Stay in the clinic for 15 minutes after getting the vaccine. You may be asked to wait for 30 minutes if there is concern about a possible vaccine allergy. 
  • Tell a health care provider at the clinic if you feel unwell while waiting. Be sure to leave your mask on and stay at least two metres away from anyone who is not part of your household. 
  • Use the alcohol-based hand rub to clean your hands before leaving the clinic.

Side Effects

Side effects are common and can show the vaccine is working to produce protection in your body.

Side effects may make you feel unwell for 1 to 3 days. The most common side effects of the COVID-19 vaccines are: 

  • soreness / redness / swelling where you received the needle 
  • headache
  • muscle or joint pain 
  • chills or fever 
  • swelling / tenderness around the armpit area (with the Moderna vaccine) 

It can help to place a cool, damp cloth or wrapped ice pack where the vaccine was given. If you need it, pain or fever medication (such as acetaminophen/Tylenol or ibuprofen) may help with pain or fever. 

If you have any concerns about the symptoms you develop after getting the vaccine, contact your health care provider for advice.

Serious side effects after getting the vaccine are rare. However, if you develop any serious symptoms that could be an allergic reaction call 911 right away. 

Symptoms of a possible allergic reaction: 

  • hives, 
  • swelling on the face, tongue or throat, 
  • or difficulty breathing.

COVID-19 Vaccine - Information Sheet and After Care Information – Moderna, Pfizer-BioNTech and AstraZeneca/Covishield.