COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ
Who is eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine?
- All Georgians age 12 and older are eligible for COVID-19 vaccine, regardless of health condition or occupation.
- Note for individuals aged 12-17: Anyone under age 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to receive vaccination. The Pfizer vaccine is the only vaccine currently authorized for ages 12 and older. Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are authorized for ages 18 and up.
How do I schedule an appointment?
- For an appointment with one of the 8 county health departments in the Coastal Health District, go to chdcovidvax.org to schedule an appointment. The online appointment scheduling system will allow for scheduling up to eight days in advance.
- Residents who need assistance with scheduling can call the Vaccine Call Center at 912-230-5506 to schedule an appointment. The Vaccine Call Center is open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m.
*Please be patient as call volume is heavy.
Do you offer walk-in vaccinations?
- Yes, during certain hours at specific clinics. To view the walk-in vaccine schedule for our health department clinics, visit chdcovidvax.org.
I am immunocompromised and would like to receive a third dose of vaccine. What do I need to do?
- Health Departments in Georgia are now offering a third dose of COVID-19 vaccine to individuals with certain immune system concerns. Third doses are only recommended for immunocompromised individuals who previously received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.
Who is eligible to get the additional dose?
The additional vaccine dose should be considered for people with moderate to severe immune compromise due to a medical condition, or receipt of immunosuppressive medications or treatments. This includes people who have:
- Active treatment for solid tumor and hematologic malignancies
- Receipt of a solid-organ transplant and taking immunosuppressive therapy
- Receipt of CAR-T-cell or hematopoietic stem cell transplant (within 2 years of transplantation or taking immunosuppression therapy)
- Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (such as DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
- Advanced or untreated HIV infection
- Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids (≥20mg prednisone or equivalent per day), alkylating agents, antimetabolites, transplant-related immunosuppressive drugs, cancer chemotherapeutic agents classified as severely immunosuppressive, tumor-necrosis (TNF) blockers, and other biologic agents that are immunosuppressive or immunomodulatory
Is documentation required?
- Clients can provide documentation from their physician OR self-attest to one of the medical conditions above by signing the consent form.
How do I make an appointment for a third dose?
- If you meet the qualifications for a third dose of vaccine and it has been at least 28 days since you received your second dose of vaccine, then please make an appointment for vaccination. Appointments can be made online at chdcovidvax.org or by calling 912-230-5506 (call volume is expected to be heavy).
Do I have to be vaccinated in the county where I live?
- No. You do not have to be a resident of a particular county to be vaccinated in that county.
What should I bring with me to my appointment?
- Please bring a face mask. Face masks are required for everyone over age 2 unless they have a specific condition that prevents safe use of a face mask.
- If you have health insurance, please bring your insurance information. You will not be charged a fee for COVID-19 vaccine through public health. If you have health insurance, we will ask for your insurance information, but you will have no out of pocket costs. If you do not have insurance, you will not be charged a fee.
Are there other places where I can get vaccinated?
What is the cost for vaccination?
- There is no cost for COVID-19 vaccine through public health. If you have health insurance, we will ask for your insurance information, but you will have no out of pocket costs. If you do not have insurance, you will not be charged a fee.
Can I request a specific brand of vaccine?
- No, but on our scheduling portal we list which brand of vaccine will be used at each location.
How will I know when to come back for my second vaccination?
- If you are vaccinated with Moderna or Pfizer, you will need to return for a second dose. This will be discussed with you during your appointment for your first dose. You will receive a vaccination card or printout that tells you which vaccine you received and when you need to return.
- Also, CDC has developed a new, voluntary smartphone-based tool called v-safe that uses text messaging to send you a reminder when you need a second dose.
- If you receive the Pfizer vaccine, you’ll need to return in about 3 weeks for your second dose. If you receive the Moderna vaccine, you’ll need to return in about 4 weeks.
- If you receive the Janssen vaccine from Johnson & Johnson, you will not need to return for a second dose.
Why will I need to stay on site for monitoring after my vaccination?
- In a few cases, individuals have had an allergic reaction to vaccination. You should stay on site for 15-30 minutes to be monitored so that if you have an allergic reaction, our staff can take care of you.
Does the COVID-19 vaccine use live coronavirus?
- No. None of the three authorized vaccines use any component of the coronavirus, and you cannot get the coronavirus from the vaccine.
- The CDC has more information about the vaccine types online – visit the CDC website.
Does the vaccine contain preservatives?
- No. None of the currently authorized vaccines use preservatives.
Where can I get vaccinated?
- Hundreds of healthcare facilities around Georgia are providing vaccine, including public health departments, hospitals, long-term care facilities, primary care providers, pharmacies, etc.
- Click here to visit vaccinefinder.org.
If I’ve already had COVID-19 and recovered, should I still get vaccinated?
- Yes. If you have had COVID-19 but have recovered and/or you are outside of your isolation period, you may be vaccinated.
I’m not at high risk of COVID-19 complications. Would it be better to take my chances with coronavirus instead of a rushed vaccine?
- Of the two options, COVID-19 is more dangerous. While data suggests that younger people tend to have less serious illness, many young people are hospitalized, require intensive care, and even die from COVID-19. By contrast, COVID vaccines have been tested in tens of thousands of people with no serious side effects to date.
What are the potential side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine?
- Based on available data, COVID-19 vaccination is expected to cause some muscle pain, fever, and headache. Symptoms should be mild and short-lived. Additional information:
Johnson & Johnson Vaccine
How will side effects be tracked?
- The CDC will utilize several existing monitoring systems for COVID-19 vaccine safety. Additionally, CDC has developed a new, voluntary smartphone-based tool called v-safe that uses text messaging and web surveys to provide personalized health check-ins after patients receive a COVID-19 vaccination. V-safe allows patients to report any side effects after COVID-19 vaccination to CDC in almost real time.
What will happen if serious side effects are reported?
- If potential safety issues with any COVID-19 vaccine are discovered, CDC will work with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other vaccine safety partners to rapidly assess the potential safety issue.
- Up-to-date vaccine safety information will be shared with the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). If needed, ACIP may make changes to its vaccine recommendations based on this information.
If I get vaccinated, do I still need to wear a mask?
- If you are fully vaccinated, you can participate in many of the activities that you did before the pandemic.
- To maximize protection from the Delta variant and prevent possibly spreading it to others, wear a mask indoors in public if you are in an area of substantial or high transmission.
- Wearing a mask is most important if you have a weakened immune system or if, because of your age or an underlying medical condition, you are at increased risk for severe disease, or if someone in your household has a weakened immune system, is at increased risk for severe disease, or is unvaccinated. If this applies to you or your household, you might choose to wear a mask regardless of the level of transmission in your area.
- You should continue to wear a mask where required by laws, rules, regulations, or local guidance.