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    COVID-19 Vaccination

     

    Tarrant County Public Health is now receiving shipments of the COVID-19 vaccine.

    As directed by the Texas Department of State Health Services, Tarrant County Public Health; along with other Texas-based health entities, is providing vaccinations in phases. Vaccine appointments will first go to those most at risk of catching, spreading or dying from COVID-19. The initial groups are called Phase 1A and 1B (see below). If you are eligible, please sign up and you will be assigned an appointment as vaccine becomes available.

    If you are not eligible at this time, you can still sign up and we will assign you a group as the State announces other phases. If you show up without an appointment, you will be turned away.

    Because vaccine supply is currently limited and we're trying to provide a COVID-19 safe environment for all, there may be some lines outside to aid social distancing and further assure client safety. Please dress appropriately. If standing in line for an extended period of time is medically difficult, please speak to medical screeners on-site to make other arrangements.

    Who chooses who gets vaccinated first?

    Many people want to be at the front of the line when it comes time to receive the vaccine. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has met and issued guidance on who should receive the vaccine first. Similarly, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) has a committee to direct how the vaccine should be distributed in Texas. At this time DSHS has created Phase 1a and 1b. As more vaccine is made available additional groupings will be added until everyone is covered. If you are not sure if you are in Phase 1a, there is a more detailed definition here:

    Phase 1A First Tier

    1.     Paid and unpaid workers in hospital settings working directly with patients who are positive or at high risk for COVID-19. Such as but not limited to:

    a.     Physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists and other support staff (custodial staff, etc.)

    b.     Additional clinical staff providing supporting laboratory, pharmacy, diagnostic and/or rehabilitation services

    c.     Others having direct contact with patients or infectious materials

    2.     Long-term care staff working directly with vulnerable residents. Includes:

    a.     Direct care providers at nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and state supported living centers

    b.     Physicians, nurses, personal care assistants, custodial, food service staff

    3.     EMS providers who engage in 9-1-1 emergency services like pre-hospital care and transport

    4.     Home health care workers, including hospice care, who directly interface with vulnerable and high-risk patients

    5.     Residents of long-term care facilities

    Phase 1A Second Tier

    1.     Staff in outpatient care settings who interact with symptomatic        patients. Such as but not limited to:

    a.     Physicians, nurses, and other support staff (custodial staff, etc.)

    b.     Clinical staff providing diagnostic, laboratory, and/or rehabilitation services

    c.     Non-9-1-1 transport for routine care

    d.     Healthcare workers in corrections and detention facilities

    2.     Direct care staff in freestanding emergency medical care facilities and urgent care clinics

    3.     Community pharmacy staff who may provide direct services to clients, including vaccination or testing for individuals who may have COVID

    4.     Public health and emergency response staff directly involved in administration of COVID testing and vaccinations

    5.     Last responders who provide mortuary or death services to decedents with COVID-19. Includes:

    a.      Embalmers and funeral home workers who have direct contact with decedents

    b.     Medical examiners and other medical certifiers who have direct contact with decedents

    6.     School nurses who provide health care to students and teachers

    Phase 1B

    • People 65 years of age and older 
    • People 16 years of age and older with at least one chronic medical condition that puts them at increased risk for severe illness from the virus that causes COVID-19, such as but not limited to:
      • Cancer
      • Chronic kidney disease
      • COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
      • Heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease or cardiomyopathies
      • Solid organ transplantation
      • Obesity and severe obesity (body mass index of 30 kg/m2 or higher)
      • Pregnancy
      • Sickle cell disease
      • Type 2 diabetes mellitus

    I am in one of the groups above, how do I register to receive my shot from Tarrant County Public Health and/or its partners?

    We are scheduling individual appointments, it is preferred that each person registering uses an individual email address. If you only have one email address for the family, please create additional emails for each person. Learn more about free email accounts here

    To register for the vaccine, click the registration button above.

    What happens once I receive an appointment?

    You will receive information on your appointment through either text, phone, and/or text. Your appointment may be scheduled at any of our partner locations, please follow the instructions in your appointment message and arrive at the scheduled place and time.

    There is no need to show up for your appointment more than 15-30 minutes in advance. When you show, be prepared to stand in line, but every effort is being made to avoid long lines.  If you are physically unable to wait in line, please come to the front of the line and let the medical screeners know and they will make accommodations. Some lines may be outside.

    What happens if I can’t make my appointment?

    Appointments cannot be rescheduled

    Please make every effort to show up on your appointment day. If you can't make your appointment day, please come the very next day.  

    Do I need to register for the second dose?

    No. Your first registration covers that. You'll receive information on your second dose when you go to your first appointment.

    More Vaccine Information

     

    What is the status of the COVID-19 vaccines that are being developed?

    There are currently several vaccines under development. The FDA has granted an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) to the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines and may choose to give other vaccines the same approval based on the careful review of the safety data. Additional COVID-19 vaccines in development are expected to be available in 2021.

    How effective are the approved vaccines?

    Two COVID-19 vaccines (produced by Pfizer and Moderna Therapeutics), report being 95 percent effective.

    How will we know these COVID-19 vaccines are safe?

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has a known and proven process for the verification of vaccines, and while these COVID-19 vaccines have been made available quickly, no step in the safety and efficacy process was skipped. The FDA issued EUAs for the first COVID-19 vaccines, only after enough scientific data was shown to indicate the vaccines safety and efficacy in a clear and compelling manner.  

    The current vaccines, even those with EUAs, continue through a trial phase, where they are tracking their volunteers to learn more about the long-term outcomes of taking the vaccine.

    Emergency room doctor receives the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

    Emergency room doctor receiving first dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

    Can the vaccine give you the virus?

    The initial vaccines being considered, both Pfizer and Moderna, do not contain live virus, which means they cannot give someone COVID-19. Additionally, recipients of the vaccine are not contagious and cannot spread COVID-19.

    It is possible for someone to be infected with COVID-19 prior to receiving the vaccine and thus they would be contagious as any other person infected with COVID-19 and could still test positive on a COVID-19 diagnostic PCR, or rapid test. An uninfected vaccine recipient however would not test positive on a PCR or rapid test but could test positive on an antibody-based test.

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    What companies are manufacturing the COVID-19 vaccine, and how are the vaccines different?

    Vaccine Manufacturer

     

    Technology

     

    Dose & Interval

    Pfizer

     

    m-RNA

    Two doses

    21 days apart

    Moderna Therapeutics

     

    m-RNA

    Two doses

    28 days apart

    Johnson & Johnson

     

     

    Viral Vector

    (non-replicating)

    Single dose

    AstraZeneca

     

    Viral Vector

    (non-replicating)

    Two doses

    28 days apart

     

    Will there be enough COVID-19 vaccine for everyone?

    Though the initial supply of the COVID-19 vaccine will be limited, additional doses of the vaccine will be available as manufacturing and distribution ramp up. Initial doses will be allocated for critical populations, including health care workers, other essential workers, and people more likely to develop severe disease, like older adults and those with underlying health conditions.

    COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation Guiding Principles and Health Care Workers Definition

    Do I need a vaccine if I already had COVID-19?

    Yes. The vaccine is recommended for people who previously have been infected with COVID-19. Vaccination of persons with current SARS-CoV-2 infection should be deferred until the person has recovered from acute illness and they can discontinue isolation. While there is no minimum interval between infection and vaccination, current evidence suggests reinfection is uncommon in the 90 days after initial infection. Persons with documented acute SARS-CoV-2 infection in the preceding 90 days may delay vaccination until near the end of this period, if desired.

    Can I choose which vaccine I want to take?

    Perhaps, when the supply of vaccines from all manufacturers becomes readily available. The vaccines will roll out across the country as they are approved for use by the FDA. Once there are multiple vaccines available, you will be able to inquire with providers to see which vaccine they have on hand, but individual providers may offer only make one vaccine option available. 

    Once people start taking the COVID-19 vaccine, will we need to keep wearing masks and social distancing?

    Until a vast majority of the public is inoculated with the vaccine, and more is learned about the immunity produced by the vaccines, people need to continue the current preventative measures to stop the spread of the virus. While the vaccine is the most important tool in controlling the pandemic, it is not a magic bullet that can end the pandemic right away. However as more and more people get the vaccine and/or develop natural immunity, we will get to the point where masks and social distancing are no longer needed.

    Can my child get the COVID-19 vaccine?

    At this time, the Pfizer vaccine is authorized under the EUA for people aged 16 and older. The Moderna vaccine is authorized under the EUA for people age 18 and older.

    What will the COVID-19 vaccine cost?

    The vaccine is free. Operation Warp Speed, a federal program, is paying all the costs associated with vaccinations.

    Is getting a COVID-19 vaccine immunization mandatory?

    COVID-19 vaccinations are voluntary, but we strongly recommend all eligible persons receive the vaccine.

    Tarrant County Juvenile Detention nurse receives her first dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

    Tarrant County Juvenile Detention nurse receives her first dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

    Where will people go to get the COVID-19 vaccine?

    Public announcements will be made as soon as the vaccine becomes available. It is expected that people will be able to get COVID-19 vaccinations from their doctor, local pharmacies, hospitals, and other places that normally provide vaccines for the public.

    How many doses of vaccine will I need?

    It is important to understand which vaccine you are receiving. The majority of the vaccines will require two doses.

    Tarrant County Sheriff Deputy receives his first dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

    Tarrant County Sheriff Deputy receives his first dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

    How long do I have to wait between doses?
    Depending on the vaccine you receive, there may be a 21-28 days between the first and second dose. When you receive the first dose, it is important that you wait for the designated time and then get the second dose. The effectiveness of the vaccine is highest when the doses are spaced appropriately. Information will be provided to everyone who receives the COVID-19 vaccine to ensure they receive the correct second dose.

    Will the COVID-19 vaccines require special handling?

    Each vaccine has different storage and preparation requirements. Public Health staff who handle vaccines are trained on storing, handling and preparing them safely to ensure the viability of every vaccine dose.

    Is there any proof we need to show if we’ve had a COVID-19 vaccine shot?

    Those receiving COVID-19 vaccine will have the immunization noted on their official IMMTRAC vaccine record.

     

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