COVID-19 vaccinations

Saturday, April 2, 2022

Eligibility

Everyone older than 6 months is now eligible for COVID-19 vaccines. Children younger than 11 years old get a reduced dose vaccine. COVID-19 vaccines are generally widely available in NYC and are free. Pfizer or Moderna are the approved vaccines for people under 18 years of age. Johnson & Johnson is a one-shot vaccine.

Third dose. People who are immunocompromised and got the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, should get a third vaccine at least four weeks after the second dose. New York City Health Department guidance www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/covid/covid-19-third-dose.pdf.

Booster shots are recommended for people who have gotten their first round of vaccination(s). It is OK to mix and match brands with the boosters. The first booster shot should be taken 8 months after the second dose. The second booster shot can be taken 4 months after the first booster shot. 

Second booster shots are recommended for people who are 65+ years of age or immunocompromised. 

CDC recommends that you stay up to date with your vaccines and boosters cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/stay-up-to-date.html.

Make an appointment for a vaccination

The NYC Vaccine Finder site tells you everywhere in NYC that vaccinations are available and the type of vaccination offered; you can also filter by zip code and walk-up  vaccinefinder.nyc.gov. Book an appointment directly from this site. 

New Yorkers who want the vaccine may make appointments by phone at 1-833-697-4829 or 1-877-829-4692 8am - 9pm

Vaccinations in your home. All New Yorkers are now eligible for at-home vaccination, and you can choose which vaccine to get. Those interested can call 877-VAX-4NYC or sign up online at forms.cityofnewyork.us/f/home

Seniors who need travel assistance to get to their appointments can request help when they are making their appointments.

Useful links

NYC COVID-19 vaccines page www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-vaccines.page

NYC’s Facebook page facebook.com/groups/204675344701435. Also has a form to ask for help getting a vaccination appointment.

Getting to an appointment

The city offers free transportation to and from vaccine sites for adults who are over age 65 or have an ambulatory, visual, intellectual, or developmental disability. To reserve transportation, including ambulette and cab options, call 877-VAX-4-NYC.

NYC Vaccine for All to Offer Transportation for NYC Seniors www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/news/035-21/vaccine-all-city-offer-transportation-nyc-seniors. Seniors age 65 or older who are unable to make their own arrangements and need transportation to and from a COVID-19 vaccination appointment can sign up for transportation throughout the City. Older New Yorkers age 65 and over who make an appointment for vaccine at a City-operated site will be asked whether they have a way to get to and from their appointment. If they require transportation, they will be screened and directed to transportation options, including Access-a-Ride, ambulette services, cab service via Curb and in a few weeks, transportation by select Senior Center programs. 

NYC vaccination locations

nyc.gov/vaccinefinder

www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-vaccine-locations.page 

Official apps to show your vaccination and test results

Excelsior Pass & Excelsior Pass Plus
Your CDC card, which you received when you were vaccinated, and the Excelsior Pass are ways to prove that you have been vaccinated. 

The Excelsior Pass is a free and voluntary platform for businesses and individuals that can be used to show secure proof of a recent negative COVID test or vaccination. There are currently three different types of passes: COVID-19 Vaccination Pass, COVID-19 PCR Test Pass and COVID-19 Antigen Test Pass. To retrieve a Pass, visit the Excelsior Pass website at epass.ny.gov. You will need to provide some basic personal information, including your first and last name, date of birth and zip code. You'll also need to verify your identity with three "challenge questions" whose answers are unique to you. Because we do not save or store your personal information, you will need to enter this information every time you retrieve a new pass. Once you’ve retrieved your Pass, you can print it, save a screenshot, or save it in the Excelsior Pass Wallet mobile app for easy access later. The Excelsior Pass Wallet app is available for free from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. Learn more and download the pass at covid19vaccine.health.ny.gov/excelsior-pass. The COVID-19 Vaccination Pass is currently valid for 30 days after the Pass is retrieved. After the pass expires, you can retrieve a new pass from the Excelsior Pass website at epass.ny.gov

If you are having difficulty obtaining an Excelsior Pass it could be an error with your vaccination records or a technical difficulty. To correct errors in your vaccine records call the NYC Health Department Citywide Immunization Registry (CIR) at 347-396-2400, or send an email to cir@health.nyc.gov to ask for assistance. The CIR website is www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/services/cir-parents-guardians.page. For assistance with technical issues: call Excelsior Pass Technical Support at 844-699-7277. You can also request assistance online at on.ny.gov/epass-help.

NYC COVID SAFE app 
Available on Android (Google Play) and iOS devices (Apple store). This app optionally holds a photo of your vaccination card, official ID card and last test results.

Vaccine scams

FTC Issues Consumer Tips for Avoiding COVID-19 Vaccine Scams
Be on the lookout for vaccination scams. ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2020/12/ftc-issues-consumer-tips-avoiding-covid-19-vaccine-scams

General information

NY State vaccine information covid19vaccine.health.ny.gov

CDC COVID-19 vaccines page cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/index.html

The vaccine supply chain

The Federal Government is purchasing and distributing the vaccines to the states. The Federal government has also taken responsibility for on-site vaccinations of residents and staff in long-term care facilities, and is partnering with pharmacies: CVS, Walgreens, RiteAid and Managed Health Care Associates, Inc. cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/long-term-care/pharmacy-partnerships.html

States and the federal government will be responsible for distributing the supplies of the vaccine to local governments. New York State will also assist with administering the vaccines.

Local governments will distribute the vaccines to area providers.

FAQ, articles and resources

NYC vaccinations by zip code www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-data-vaccines.page

Possible Side Effects After Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine
March16, 2021, cdc.gov
Talk to your doctor about taking over-the-counter medicine, such as ibuprofen, acetaminophen, aspirin, or antihistamines, for any pain and discomfort you may experience after getting vaccinated. You can take these medications to relieve post-vaccination side effects if you have no other medical reasons that prevent you from taking these medications normally. It is not recommended you take these medicines before vaccination for the purpose of trying to prevent side effects.

Two-dose shots should be from the same brand
Dr. Julian Watkins of the NYC  Dept. of Health clarified questions about getting vaccinated. He said that the two-dose shots should be from the same brand (no mixing and matching Pfizer and Moderna); to wait two weeks after any other immunization before getting vaccinated for COVID; to wait until after quarantine to get vaccinated if exposed to COVID; and that any former COVID patients should wait three months after monoclonal antibody or convalescent plasma treatments before getting vaccinated. [Source: Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer's Coronavirus update email of April 1, 2021]

Can You Catch the Coronavirus After Getting Vaccinated?
April 5, 2021, aarp.org. by Michelle Crouch, AARP
Odds are low, but some fully vaccinated people have been infected with the coronavirus...if you do get infected after your vaccination, your case is likely to be asymptomatic or mild, like a common cold.