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Q&AZ: What you need to know about getting the coronavirus vaccine in Arizona
Since January 2021, KJZZ News has received a lot of questions about how to access COVID-19 vaccines in Arizona. Here's what we know. (This guide will be updated regularly as new information becomes available.)
Who is eligible to get a vaccine in Arizona?
Anyone age 5 or older is eligible to get vaccinated in Arizona.
Three vaccines are currently approved for use in the U.S. Each has been proven to be safe and effective in preventing severe illness or death from COVID-19.
- Age 5 and up.
- Two doses, 21 days apart.
- Booster dose recommended after five months.
- Age 18 and up.
- Two doses, 28 days apart.
- Booster dose recommended after five months.
Johnson & Johnson
- Age 18 and up.
- One dose.
- Booster dose of Pfizer or Moderna recommended after two months.
For more information about different types of vaccines, visit CDC.gov.
Who is eligible for a booster dose?
Arizonans 12 and older are now eligible to receive a booster dose.
- All adults who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine initially should receive a booster of Pfizer or Moderna after two months.
- Anyone 12 or older who received the Pfizer vaccine should receive a booster after five months.
- Adults who received the Moderna vaccine should receive a booster after five months.
Which type of booster should I get?
Your booster does not need to be the same type of vaccine you had initially. The CDC recommends the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines be given as boosters in most situations. For more information about different types of vaccines, visit CDC.gov.
COVID-19 isn't as severe in children. Why should I get my kids vaccinated?
COVID-19 is typically milder in children, but it can still be risky. The Arizona Department of Health Services reports 40 Arizonans under the age of 20 have died of COVID-19 in 2021, and nearly 3,000 under age 20 have been hospitalized.
“Even though we’re seeing that most of the children who ended up with severe illness are usually patients who have medical problems, we’ve actually, especially during the delta variant surge lately, we’ve seen a lot of previously healthy kids who ended up in the hospital,” Dr. Wassim Ballan, a pediatric infectious diseases specialist at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, told KJZZ’s The Show.
Dr. Sean Elliot, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at Tucson Medical Center, told KJZZ’s The Show many parents have come to him with concerns about the safety of the vaccines for their children. Some are concerned the vaccine is too new. He encourages parents to speak with pediatricians about the vaccine’s safety.
“This particular vaccine product is newer, but it’s been tested unbelievably rigorously," Elliot said. "So it’s very much a conversation. Where are the concerns? How can I address those? And does the parent trust me as their child’s provider to give a fair, honest and transparent answer?”
And getting more children vaccinated will also help Arizona move closer to herd immunity, according to Don Herrington, interim director of the Arizona Department of Health Services.
“As with colds and influenza, children are effective spreaders of disease to each other and to people who are more vulnerable, including higher-risk youth and adults who either aren’t vaccinated or could develop a rare breakthrough case,” Herrington wrote.
Read more about COVID-19 vaccines for children at CDC.gov.
Where can I make an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine in Arizona?
There are hundreds of locations administering COVID-19 vaccines in Arizona and many sites have their own online appointment systems. You can find a list of vaccine sites statewide at azdhs.gov. Appointment information is also available by phone at 211 or 844-542-8201.
Many Albertson’s, CVS, Costco, Fry's, Safeway, Walgreens and Walmart pharmacies are offering vaccines. The website VaccineFinder.com can help you check which pharmacies near you have vaccines available.
- CVS appointments can be booked at cvs.com.
- Costco appointments can be booked at costco.com.
- Safeway and Albertson's appointments can be booked at mhealthcheckin.com.
- Fry's appointments can be booked at frysfood.com.
- Walmart appointments can be booked at walmart.com.
- Walgreens appointments can be booked at walgreens.com.
Find more Maricopa County vaccine sites at maricopa.gov.
How can I find an appointment for a specific type of vaccine?
Three vaccines are currently approved for use in the U.S. Each has been proven to be safe and effective in preventing severe illness or death from COVID-19. The Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are approved for use for adults 18 and older. The Pfizer vaccine is approved for anyone 5 or older. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses in the initial series. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine requires only one dose in the initial series.
The Arizona Department of Health Services lists vaccine sites statewide at azdhs.gov/findvaccine. Click the arrow on the left side of the map to filter locations by vaccine type.
Maricopa County Public Health also lists vaccine locations at maricopa.gov/5659/COVID-19-Vaccine-Locations. Click the dropdown menu above the map to filter locations by vaccine type.
How can I get a vaccine appointment if I don’t have internet access or I’m having trouble with appointment websites?
The state’s bilingual COVID-19 hotline is at 844-542-8201.
Maricopa County Public Health can also assist with vaccine appointments at 602-506-6767.
How can I get to my vaccine appointment in Arizona if I don't drive?
The state’s COVID-19 hotline at 844-542-8201 can assist with transportation resources.
The Arizona Department of Health Services also says, “Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS) members who cannot provide or arrange their own transportation can contact their health plans to coordinate transportation to a vaccine provider or call 1-855-345-6432 to reach the transportation line.”
Can part-time residents or visitors get the vaccine in Arizona?
Yes, according to the Arizona Department of Health Services, “place of permanent residence does not factor into whether someone can get vaccinated in Arizona.”
What do I do if I lose my COVID-19 vaccination card?
When you are vaccinated for COVID-19, you will be provided a record of immunization from the CDC
Maricopa County Public Health recommends taking a picture of the front and back of your vaccine card for your records.
If you need a replacement card, you can request one through the Arizona Immunization Program Office, which is part of the Arizona Department of Health Services. You can fill out their Immunization Record Request Form and file it via email, fax, or mail.
How does Arizona's vaccination rate compare to that of other states?
Arizona’s COVID-19 vaccination rate has consistently been about 5 percentage points lower than the national average.
The CDC tracks vaccination rates for each state on its website.
Where can I find additional information about coronavirus vaccines in Arizona?
Additional information is available from the Arizona Department of Health Services and Maricopa County Public Health.
Have another question about the coronavirus vaccine? Ask us at qaz.kjzz.og.