Russo on Possibility of Asymptomatic Infection After Vaccination

Updated December 15, 2020

There are two COVID-19 vaccines being rolled out for emergency use around the world. The first one, authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), is from Pfizer. A second vaccine is from Moderna. It has not yet received — but may receive — emergency use authorization from the FDA. A common question is: Once vaccinated, is it possible for an individual to pass COVID-19 on to someone else? Thomas A. Russo, MD, professor of medicine and chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases, says: “It remains possible that if you’re vaccinated, you could actually develop asymptomatic infections, so you feel well and have no symptoms, but potentially you could spread the virus to others.”