BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Even after getting vaccinated against the coronavirus, don’t expect a full return to normalcy just yet, a local doctor said.

Dr. Reginald Brown, Director of Emergency Medicine at Grace Medical Center, is urging everyone to get vaccinated as soon as they’re eligible but points out there are still some risks for ourselves and our communities.

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“Those that are vaccinated should still wear masks and social distance,” Dr. Brown said. “We can’t say for certain that those that have been vaccinated are immune to COVID-19.”

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That’s because no vaccine is perfect, but it does prevent serious illness from the virus and reduces your chances of getting it, Dr. Brown said.

“Those that have been vaccinated are much less likely to contract the virus and much less likely to spread the virus,” he said.

Dr. Brown said it would be safer to relax some of the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions when community transmission rates are lower.

“We must still remain vigilant,” he said. “We’re still a few months away by all optimistic accounts. By some more cautious, we may be [six to nine months] or even a year away from really relaxing some of the standards we’ve put into place.”

For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.

Stetson Miller