COVID-19 Vaccine_Bandaid

COVID-19 Vaccine

The Tulsa Health Department (THD) continues to coordinate vaccine distribution and administration in accordance with the Oklahoma COVID-19 Vaccine Priority Framework

State of Oklahoma Vaccine Plan

In the short-term, the State of Oklahoma's main priority is to ensure that healthcare professionals who are on the front lines are the first to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The state is following a detailed, phased plan that will ensure Oklahomans who are most at risk from COVID-19 receive the vaccine. The majority of Oklahomans will have access to the vaccine sometime in 2021, depending on the phase of the plan they fall into. Widespread access to the vaccine for the general public is anticipated later in 2021. As further shipments of vaccine are received, Oklahomans will receive updates on when the vaccine is ready for them to take and where they can access it.  

Phases of Vaccine Plan
The distribution of the vaccine is broken out into four broad phases in Oklahoma's plan. This allows public health officials to plan generally for different scenarios, given the availability of a vaccine to the state. if you’d like to learn more detailed information about Oklahoma’s vaccine plan click here. If you have questions, please call our COVID-19 Call Center at 918-582-9355 to speak to a public health professional. The number of doses administered by all entities in each county across the state are reported to OSDH through OSIIS and numbers are reported out collectively statewide in their weekly epidemiology report.

  • Tulsa County is currently working to complete Phase 1 while transitioning into select priority groups within Phase 2. 

When Can I Get Scheduled?
As of January 6, 2021, Oklahomans can visit the Oklahoma State Department of Health's COVID-19 Vaccine Scheduler Portal to enter their personal information to determine their eligibility to receive the vaccine within Oklahoma’s priority phase plan and receive notifications when the vaccine is available to them. As our state advances in our phased approach to vaccine distribution, the system will notify and allow individuals in additional priority groups and phases the opportunity to schedule their appointment starting every Thursday for the following week.

Please note that eligibility also doesn’t mean you’ll be able to receive an appointment right away. Appointment availability will depend on vaccine supply in each county, which changes from week to week as the state receives more vaccine doses from the federal government.

If you’re not currently eligible to receive the vaccine or if there are no appointments available in your area based on vaccine supply, registering in advance will ensure you are notified by email when your appointment is available. 

  • The Tulsa Health Department is unable to assist with technical support for the Oklahoma Vaccine Portal due to it being created and managed by Oklahoma State Department of Health. Here is their FAQ page for questions or you may also follow OSDH News for the latest updates and news.
    • 211 is a resource to help people with their questions and assist as they are able to with understanding and accessing the vaccine portal/resources. However, they are not equipped to serve as a "help desk" that could provide IT support for people with issues on the portal. OSDH is working toward a future version of the portal that would have access to an IT help desk function, but it is not something that is currently available

As a reminder, there is no list for Oklahomans to be added to in order to be included in the state’s phased approach to vaccine distribution. The Vaccine Scheduler Portal is a tool to help notify eligible Oklahomans when and where they can receive the vaccine when an appointment is available to them.  The Tulsa Health Department will also provide information on our website and social media as we move through the various populations to let people know what they need to do when the time comes.

Please review the status in Tulsa County below. New appointments in Tulsa County are typically added each Wednesday evening:

  • Healthcare Workers in Phase 1 and 2: Register at vaccinate.oklahoma.gov to be notified by email with instructions on how to schedule.
  • First Responders: Register at vaccinate.oklahoma.gov to be notified by email with instructions on how to schedule.
  • Oklahomans age 65 and over: Register at vaccinate.oklahoma.gov to be notified by email with instructions on how to schedule. 
  • Oklahomans of any age with comorbidities: Not available at this time.
  • Teachers and staff in Pre-K-12 schools and educational settings: Not available at this time.
  • Staff and residents in congregate locations and worksites: Not available at this time.
  • Senior state, county, and city government leaders and elected officials: Not available at this time.

Second Doses
If you received your first COVID-19 vaccine dose with the Tulsa Health Department, at this time, please return to the same location 21 (Pfizer) or 28 (Moderna) days after your first dose. No appointments are necessary. We request that you time it at the same time as your first appointment and bring your vaccine card with you. Do not schedule an appointment through the Oklahoma Vaccine Portal even if you receive a reminder to do so. Please call 918-582-9355 with questions.

Flexibility
Priority populations and phases remain flexible as the virus infection rates and access to health care among populations may change. Please keep in mind that an effort of this magnitude will not happen overnight. It will take some time and our efforts will continue over the days, weeks and months following initial receipt of the vaccine. We ask for patience and understanding as public health officials progress through this complicated endeavor.

Follow the Three W's
In the meantime, it’s vital that Oklahomans continue to take the necessary steps to protect themselves and others from COVID-19. Everyone should continue to wear a mask, wash their hands and watch their distance as ways to truly prevent the spread of the coronavirus. These actions, in conjunction with the vaccine plan, will make a huge difference in keeping our families and communities safe and healthy in the long term.

Benefits of Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine

We understand that some people may be concerned about getting vaccinated once a COVID-19 vaccine is available in the United States. While these vaccines are being developed as quickly as possible, routine processes and procedures remain in place to ensure the safety of any vaccine that is authorized or approved for use. Safety is a top priority, and there are many reasons to get vaccinated. FACT: COVID-19 vaccines will not give you COVID-19​.

  • COVID-19 vaccination will help keep you from getting COVID-19
    • COVID-19 vaccines are being carefully evaluated in clinical trials and will be authorized or approved only if they make it substantially less likely you’ll get COVID-19.
    • Based on what we know about vaccines for other diseases, experts believe that getting a COVID-19 vaccine may help keep you from getting seriously ill even if you do get COVID-19.
    • Getting vaccinated yourself may also protect people around you, particularly people at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
    • Experts continue to conduct more studies about the effect of COVID-19 vaccination on severity of illness from COVID-19, as well as its ability to keep people from spreading the virus that causes COVID-19.
  • COVID-19 vaccination will be a safer way to help build protection
    • COVID-19 can have serious, life-threatening complications, and there is no way to know how COVID-19 will affect you. And if you get sick, you could spread the disease to friends, family, and others around you.
    • Clinical trials of COVID-19 vaccines must first show they are safe and effective before any vaccine can be authorized or approved for use. The known and potential benefits of a COVID-19 vaccine must outweigh the known and potential risks of the vaccine for use under what is known as an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). Watch a video on what an EUA is.
    • Getting COVID-19 may offer some natural protection, known as immunity. But experts don’t know how long this protection lasts, and the risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19 far outweighs any benefits of natural immunity. COVID-19 vaccination will help protect you by creating an antibody response without having to experience sickness.
    • Both natural immunity and immunity produced by a vaccine are important aspects of COVID-19 that experts are trying to learn more about, and CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.
  • COVID-19 vaccination will be an important tool to help stop the pandemic
    • Wearing masks and social distancing help reduce your chance of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others, but these measures are not enough. Vaccines will work with your immune system so it will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed.
    • The combination of getting vaccinated and following CDC’s recommendations to protect yourself and others will offer the best protection from COVID-19.
    • Stopping a pandemic requires using all the tools we have available. As experts learn more about how COVID-19 vaccination may help reduce spread of the disease in communities, CDC will continue to update the recommendations to protect communities using the latest science.
What to Expect at Your Appointment to Get Vaccinated for COVID-19

Because COVID-19 is a new disease with new vaccines, you may have questions about what happens before, during, and after your appointment to get vaccinated. These tips from CDC will help you know what to expect when you get vaccinated, what information your provider will give you, and resources you can use to monitor your health after you are vaccinated.

Concerns about Side Effects

Most people do not have serious problems after being vaccinated. However, your arm may be sore, red, or warm to the touch. These symptoms usually go away on their own within a week. Some people report getting a headache or fever when getting a vaccine. These side effects are a sign that your immune system is doing exactly what it is supposed to do. It is working and building up protection to disease.

COVID-19 vaccines are being tested in large clinical trials to assess their safety. However, it does take time, and more people getting vaccinated before we learn about very rare or long-term side effects. That is why safety monitoring will continue. CDC has an independent group of experts that reviews all the safety data as it comes in and provides regular safety updates.

Resources:

Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19 Vaccination

The CDC has answers to commonly asked questions.

How can I schedule a vaccine appointment?
Oklahomans can visit the Oklahoma State Department of Health's COVID-19 Vaccine Scheduler Portal to enter their personal information to determine their eligibility to receive the vaccine within Oklahoma’s priority phase plan and receive notifications when the vaccine is available to them. As our state advances in our phased approach to vaccine distribution, the system will notify and allow individuals in additional priority groups and phases the opportunity to schedule their appointment starting every Thursday for the following week. 

How do I get on “the vaccination list?"
There is no list for people to get on to be included in Phase 2 vaccine distribution. We will provide information on our website and social media as we move through the various populations to let people know what they need to do when the time comes.

I’m a healthcare worker but do not have an employee ID, what do I bring to my appointment?
Any proof of employment that has your name and matches your Driver’s License.

I’m an adult with comorbidities, will I have to show my medical information to be eligible? 
We will provide instructions when we begin scheduling your population for appointments when the time comes.

How do I know when you will be in my phase?
We will be notifying the public through our website, COVID phone bank, social media and news outlets on which phase we are currently in and which people qualify for that population we are vaccinating currently. If you pre-register on the COVID-19 Vaccine Scheduler Portal you will receive an email notifying you when appointments are available for your phase.

How will I know how to make an appointment for the vaccine?
We will be notifying the public through our website, COVID phone bank, social media and news outlets on which phase we are currently in and which people qualify for that population we are vaccinating currently. 

How do I receive my second dose from the Tulsa Health Department?
If you received your first dose with the Tulsa Health Department, at this time, please return to the same location 21 (Pfizer) or 28 (Moderna) days after your first dose. No appointments are necessary. We request that you time it at the same time as your first appointment and bring your vaccine card with you. Do not schedule an appointment through the Oklahoma Vaccine Portal even if you receive a reminder to do so.

I need to reschedule my vaccine appointment; how do I do that?
Currently, we are not able to reschedule vaccine appointments. If appointments are available, you can make an appointment or call the COVID-19 Call Center at 918-582-9355 to get assistance.

Can we choose which vaccine we can get?
At this time, you may not be able to choose due to availability, however if you are allergic to vaccines or vaccine ingredients or your healthcare provider has recommended you not get a certain vaccine let your vaccine administrator know.

Can I get vaccine in a different county than may residence?
At this time, we recommend getting the vaccine from the county you reside in; however, you may call the county you wish to get the vaccine from and inquire to the requirements for receiving vaccine in that county.

Can I edit my information on the Vaccine Scheduler Portal after I submit it?
If you answer something incorrectly, you cannot edit it after you submit it. You can register again with a different email address.

Vaccine Safety

The U.S. vaccine safety system ensures that all vaccines are as safe as possible. Safety is a top priority while federal partners work to make a coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine(s) available. 

The federal government, through Operation Warp Speed, has been working since the pandemic started to make one or more COVID-19 vaccines available as soon as possible. Although local public health authorities do not have a role in developing COVID-19 vaccines, the Tulsa Health Department has been working closely with the Oklahoma State Department of Health, State of Oklahoma, OKC-County Health Department and community partners to develop vaccination plans.