The COVID-19 vaccine will be distributed in phases which have been determined based on risk level as set by the Department of Health and Human Services per CDC instructions. Following is a summary of these phases:
- Phase 1A – Healthcare workers, many long-term care facility residents and staff
- Phase 1B –
- Tier 1 – Law enforcement, public health, fire department, corrections, emergency management, public works
- Tier 2 – Age 65 and over and adults with cancer, Chronic Kidney Disease, COPD, Heart Conditions, weakened immune system due to organ transplant, severe obesity (BMI >40), pregnancy, Sickle Cell Disease, Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, or individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities such as Down Syndrome.
- Tier 3- Education staff, child care staff, critical infrastructure, energy sector, food and agriculture, government, information technology
- Phase 2 – Commercial facilities, critical manufacturing, financial services, food and agriculture, government, disproportionality affected populations, homeless
- Phase 3 – Widespread availability for all Missouri residents
Two vaccines have been approved for use from Pfizer and Moderna, and the limited number allotted to Missouri is being used to vaccinate long term care facilities and healthcare workers. DHSS anticipates Phase 1A to take until late January 2021 to complete before beginning vaccinations for those in Phase 1B. These timelines will be adjusted based on vaccine availability moving forward. To learn more about which phase you would qualify for, check here.
You can call to get on the waiting list for the COVID-19 vaccine at the Health Department. You cannot sign up for the waiting list through the website.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How many doses will I have to get of the vaccine? Each vaccine requires 2 doses. Pfizer vaccine requires doses 21 days apart and Moderna vaccine requires 28 days apart
- Should I get the vaccine if I’ve already had COVID-19? Yes, this can help reduce your risk of reinfection
- How much will the vaccine cost? There will be no out of pocket cost for the vaccine. Insurance can be billed for the vaccine.
- When will the vaccine be available? To be determined, but we expecting group 1B to start in February
- Will vaccines be given at the Health Department? We are still planning how and where we will be administering the vaccine
- Is the vaccine safe? Yes it is safe. It has gone through three phases of clinical trials and has been approved by the FDA as safe. Immunizations are continually monitored for safety as they are in use
- Will I be protected from COVID-19 right after receiving the vaccine? It takes the body time to build antibodies from a vaccine, so it could take time for your body to build an immune response. The vaccine will also be more effective when you get both doses of the vaccine. It is important to continue wearing masks, practicing social distancing and good hand hygiene after vaccination while others build immunity and your body takes time to build an immune response.
- Are there side effects to the vaccine? The vaccines may cause side effects in some people, like sore muscles, feeling tired, or mild fever. These reactions mean the vaccine is working to help teach your body how to fight COVID-19 if you are exposed. For most people, these side effects will last no longer than a day or two. Having these types of side effects does NOT mean that you have COVID-19. If you have questions about your health after your shot, call your doctor, nurse, or clinic. As with any medicine, it is rare but possible to have a serious reaction, such as not being able to breathe. It is very unlikely that this will happen, but if it does, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room
- Which phase am I in to receive the vaccine? The Department of Health and Senior Services has put together a comprehensive list, check it here