COVID-19 Vaccine Information
Getting a vaccine to everyone who wants one is our priority. We appreciate your patience as we first work to vaccinate those who work in the health care setting or are residents in long-term care facilities. Once a vaccine is made available to other members of our community, it will be well publicized how you can be vaccinated. There will likely be multiple options for you to receive your vaccination, either with your provider, a pharmacy, or public health department.
While you wait to get your vaccine please continue to wear a mask, practice social distancing, and wash your hands frequently. For more information, please visit the coronavirus main page.
Who is currently getting vaccinated?
Columbia/Boone County Public Health and Human Services is currently vaccinating those in Phase 1A and Phase 1B, Tier 1
The priority groups detailed below are determined by Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. We have received the state’s updated COVID-19 vaccine guidance, and are working on implementing it in Boone County. We are relieved to see that we have been given the go ahead to move on to vaccinating some of our most vulnerable residents as supply levels permit. This is an important step in slowing the spread of COVID-19 in our community.
At this time Columbia/Boone County Public Health and Human Services continues to vaccinate those who are considered 1A. We are also beginning to vaccinate those within Phase 1B, Tier 1, but vaccine supply is limited. If you believe you believe you qualify under one of these criteria, please contact your employer. Moving into the next tiers and phases will be dependent on vaccine availability. Our department will make a public announcement when we are able to vaccinate those in 1B, Tier 2.
|Phase 1A|| |
|Phase 1B|| |
Tier 1: First Responders and Emergency:
Tier 2: High Risk Individuals
Tier 3: Critical Infrastructure
|Phase 2|| |
|Phase 3||All Missouri Residents|
Columbia/Boone County COVID-19 Vaccine Survey
Please fill out the survey below so that Columbia/Boone County Public Health and Human Services can keep you updated on the local availability of vaccine. When the vaccine is available to you, we will be able to contact you with further instructions on where and how to get vaccinated.
You can access the survey by clicking here, or on the image below.
Please note that we are following state guidelines on prioritizing populations to be vaccinated. Filling out this survey does not guarantee when you get a vaccine, but does provide a way for our department to contact you when doses are available.
The supply of COVID-19 is limited right now, and will be for some time, but vaccine supply will increase over time and we expect that all adults should be able to be vaccinated in 2021. These first doses are being allocated to front-line health care workers, residents and staff of long-term care facilities and first responders. (To view the categories of priority populations in these first phases, please see the chart below.) You can sign up for email alerts so we can let you know when the vaccine is available to you, and where you can go to get vaccinated.
A vaccine for COVID-19 is only one of the ways to slow the spread of the disease. Because the supply of vaccine will be limited at first, we’ll have to keep doing everything we know works best to slow the spread of the pandemic. Wearing a face mask, staying at least 6 feet away from others, avoiding crowded indoor spaces, washing your hands frequently, and staying home if you are sick will still be the most effective ways to protect our friends and family until the majority of people have been vaccinated.
Yes. Vaccines have to pass extensive trials and meet rigorous safety and effectiveness standards before they are widely distributed. Both COVID-19 vaccines were studied in tens of thousands of people, the study results were reviewed by independent advisory committees, and these committees then gave advice on who should receive the vaccine. Finally, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reviewed all of this information to determine if the benefits outweigh the risks, and gave authorization for the vaccines to be used.
Although the COVID-19 vaccines were developed in record time, that’s because the global scientific community has focused their efforts on combating COVID-19, not because they’ve cut any corners. Researchers were also able to use existing science and technology, which made it possible to develop vaccines faster than any methods previously used.
Vaccines teach your body’s immune system how to fight an invader, generally by introducing something that helps the body recognize the virus in the future. When your body responds to the vaccine, it learns how to fight that illness so that the next time you encounter it, your body is prepared to fight it off without making you terribly sick.
In the case of the COVID-19 vaccine, the first two authorized vaccines draw on decades of research and results with mRNA (messenger RNA) technology.You’ve seen lots of images of the coronavirus, with those characteristic spikes. These vaccines use mRNA to teach your body to recognize those spikes and to fight off the virus.
As with most vaccines, you may experience some mild side effects after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. You might not feel great the next day — or even a few days — and may have soreness in your arm, a mild fever, chills, tiredness, headache, and nausea or diarrhea. It may feel like you have the flu, and it may disrupt some of your normal daily activities. None of that is fun, but these side effects are normal signs that the vaccine is working. Neither of the COVID-19 vaccines have been found to have any severe side effects.
Because we don’t know yet how long natural immunity lasts after recovering from COVID-19, you should plan to get vaccinated.
The vaccines’ clinical trials show that the vaccines are safe for people with all kinds of conditions, including those who are immuno-compromised, have heart conditions, diabetes, cancer, and many others. In fact, because these put you at a higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19, it is particularly important that you get vaccinated. Talk to your doctor or nurse practitioner if you have questions about whether you should get vaccinated for COVID-19.
Though the mRNA technology used in the vaccine is known to be safe and effective for people who are pregnant or lactating, none of the COVID-19 vaccine trials included people in those groups. If you are pregnant or lactating, talk to your health care provider about the benefits and risks of getting the COVID-19 vaccine.
Vaccination is not mandatory at this time. It is strongly recommended, but it is not required by federal, state, local, or tribal governments. Private employers, however, may choose to require it of their employees when the vaccine is widely available.
Herd immunity occurs when a high percentage of the community is immune to a disease (through vaccination and/or prior illness), making the spread of this disease from person to person unlikely. Herd immunity protects the most vulnerable members of our population. If enough people are vaccinated against dangerous diseases, those who are susceptible and cannot get vaccinated are protected because the germ will not be able to “find” those susceptible individuals.
The percentage of people who need to have protection in order to achieve herd immunity varies by disease, and experts don’t know yet what percentage of people would need to get vaccinated to achieve herd immunity to COVID-19.
Yes, you can get vaccinated in Boone County even if you do not live in Boone County. Currently, we are focused on vaccinating the groups designated as priority “1A” by the state: patient-facing healthcare providers, and the residents and staff of long-term care facilities. That includes people who work in Boone County but live somewhere else. We know that a lot of people come to Boone County for medical care; in that case, we encourage you to talk to your healthcare provider once vaccines become available for the group you fall in to.