Member Questions and Answers

How much does a COVID-19 vaccine cost?

You can receive a vaccine at no cost to you.

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Where can I get a COVID-19 vaccine?

Where you can get a vaccine will vary by community. To find where you can get a COVID-19 vaccine, follow one of these steps:2

  • Search vaccines.gov.
  • Text your ZIP code to 438829.*
  • Call 1-800-232-0233 to find vaccine facilities near you.

Contact your chosen facility to set up your COVID-19 vaccine appointment.

Talk with your health care provider or pharmacist about getting vaccinated if you choose to get it. You can ask them any questions you have.

You can visit the state public health website for the most up-to-date information. You can also call the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567.

When you get a COVID-19 vaccine, you'll receive a CDC COVID-19 vaccine card. You can use this vaccine card as proof of your vaccination. Be sure to:

  • Keep your vaccine card in a safe place.
  • Make a copy of your vaccine card in case it gets lost. You can take a photo of it or scan it.
  • If you get a booster shot, bring your vaccine card with you so they can update it.4

Missing your COVID-19 vaccine card? If you did not get a card or can't find your card, contact the vaccine provider where you got your first shot. Ask if they can replace your card. Or you can contact your state public health department. They can help you find out how to get a card.4

*Standard messaging and data fees may apply.

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What is the reward AmeriHealth Caritas North Carolina is offering for getting COVID-19 vaccination?

  • Members that were not already fully vaccinated before November 1, 2021, are eligible for rewards.
  • Members that are eligible to be vaccinated {5 years old and older} will be eligible for one $75 reward for getting at least one vaccination dose.
  • The member must be vaccinated by June 30, 2022, to receive a reward.
  • To report on vaccination status, members should visit our website or call Member Services at 1-855-375-8811, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. TTY users should call 1-866-209-6421. You will need the member's vaccination card information to report.
  • The rewards will be loaded onto the member's AmeriHealth Caritas North Carolina CARE Card and can be used for purchases at selected retailers. Here is a list of retailers and products you can buy.

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Should I get a COVID-19 vaccine booster shot?

The CDC recommends COVID-19 vaccine booster shots for everyone ages 12 and older.4 Vaccine guidelines may continue to evolve with more research.

To learn more about COVID-19 vaccine booster shots and additional doses, you can visit the state public health website for the most up-to-date information. You can also call the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567.

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Which COVID-19 vaccine booster should I get?

When you can get a booster shot depends on your age and the type of vaccine you first received.

If you are age 12 or older, you can get a booster shot of the Pfizer vaccine. The CDC recommends a Pfizer booster shot six months after your second Pfizer vaccine shot.4

If you are age 18 or older, the CDC recommends a booster shot if:4

  • You got the Johnson & Johnson vaccine shot at least two months ago, or
  • You got the second Moderna or Pfizer vaccine shot at least six months ago.

The CDC says if you are age 18 or older, when you get a booster shot, you can choose whether to get a Moderna, Pfizer, or Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine booster. This means you can:4

  • Get a booster shot of the same type of vaccine you first received
  • Get a booster shot of a different type of vaccine than you received. This is sometimes called "mix and match dosing."

Vaccine guidelines may continue to evolve with more research.

The CDC says that getting a COVID-19 vaccine is an important tool to help stop the pandemic.1 If you have questions, contact your health care provider or pharmacist.

You can also visit the CDC website. You can visit the state public health website for the most up-to-date information. You can also call the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567.

You can get a booster shot at no cost to you. Need help with getting an appointment for a COVID-19 booster shot? Call Member Services at 1-855-375-8811, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. TTY users should call 1-866-209-6421.

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Should I get a third dose if I am immunocompromised?

People who are immunocompromised have been diagnosed with an abnormal immune system by a health care provider. If you are moderately to severely immunocompromised, you are especially at risk of COVID-19 infection. The CDC says that immunocompromised people ages 5 and older should get a COVID-19 vaccine series as soon as possible.5

If you are immunocompromised, contact your health care provider. Ask them about your specific COVID-19 vaccine needs.

Need help with getting a health care provider? We're here to assist. Call Member Services at 1-855-375-8811, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. TTY users should call 1-866-209-6421.

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I don't have a health care provider. How do I get a vaccine?

You can receive a vaccine without seeing your provider. To find where you can get a COVID-19 vaccine, follow one of these steps:3

  • Search vaccines.gov.
  • Text your ZIP code to 438829.* You'll get a list of vaccine facilities near you.
  • Call 1-800-232-0233 to find vaccine facilities near you.

Or you can contact the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567 or visit https://covid19.ncdhhs.gov/vaccines for the most up-to-date information.

When you get a COVID-19 vaccine, you'll receive a CDC COVID-19 vaccine card. You can use this vaccine card as proof of your vaccination. Be sure to:

  • Keep your vaccine card in a safe place.
  • Make a copy of your vaccine card in case it gets lost. You can take a photo of it or scan it.
  • If you get a booster shot, bring your vaccine card with you so they can update it.4

Missing your COVID-19 vaccine card? If you did not get a card or can't find your card, contact the vaccine provider where you got your first shot. Ask if they can replace your card. Or you can contact the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567.

*Standard messaging and data fees may apply.

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How can I get to my COVID-19 vaccine appointment?

Need a ride to and from your appointment? We can help. Call Member Services at 1-855-375-8811 to schedule a ride. TTY users should call 1-866-209-6421.Or you can call ModivCare, our transportation provider, directly at 1-833-498-2262.

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Can my kids get a COVID-19 vaccine?

Yes, they can. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has authorized the Pfizer vaccine for emergency use for youth ages 5 to 15. They have also fully approved the Pfizer vaccine for people ages 16 and older. This means that everyone ages 5 and older can get one of the COVID-19 vaccines.2

Youth ages 12 and older can also get a booster shot at no cost to you. Need help with getting an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine or booster shot? Call Member Services at 1-855-375-8811 (1-866-209-6421) to schedule a ride. TTY users should call 1-866-209-6421. Or you can call ModivCare, our transportation provider, directly at 1-833-498-2262.

The CDC says that getting a COVID-19 vaccine is an important tool to help stop the pandemic.1 Vaccine guidelines may continue to evolve with more research. If you have questions, contact your health care provider or pharmacist.

You can visit the state public health website for the most up-to-date information. You can also call the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567.

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What COVID-19 vaccines are available?

Three COVID-19 vaccines are approved or authorized for emergency use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA):1

  • The Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine has full approval for everyone ages 5 and older.
  • The Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are currently authorized for emergency use for everyone ages 18 and older.
    • The Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines require two doses. If you receive a COVID-19 vaccine that needs a second dose, the CDC says you will need both doses to get the most protection from the COVID-19 vaccine you received.2 The CDC recommends a booster shot six months after your second dose of either Pfizer or Moderna.
    • The Johnson & Johnson vaccine only requires one dose. The CDC recommends a booster shot two months after your dose.

If you have questions, contact your health care provider or pharmacist for more information. You can also call the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567 or visit https://covid19.ncdhhs.gov/vaccines. Need help with getting an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine shot? Call Member Services at 1-855-375-8811. TTY users should call 1-866-209-6421.

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How do I know when I am fully vaccinated and protected?

When you are fully vaccinated and protected depends on which COVID-19 vaccine you get. The CDC considers people fully vaccinated:6

  • Two weeks after their second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine that comes in two doses. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are examples of vaccines that come in two doses.
  • Two weeks after they get a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine that comes in one dose. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is a vaccine that is only one dose.

The CDC also recommends COVID-19 vaccine booster shots for everyone ages 12 and older.3 Please see Should I get a COVID-19 vaccine booster shot? in these FAQs to learn more.

Need help with getting an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine shot? Call Member Services at 1-855-375-8811. TTY users should call 1-866-209-6421.

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Why are some COVID-19 vaccines given in one dose and some given in two doses?

Each vaccine works a little differently to get people fully vaccinated and protected. Some vaccines need different numbers of shots. They also need different timing on when you receive shots.2

You can learn more about COVID-19 vaccines on the CDC website.

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I am pregnant. Should I get a vaccine?

The CDC recommends that all people ages 5 and older get a COVID-19 vaccine.1 This includes people who are pregnant, breastfeeding, trying to become pregnant, or who might become pregnant later.7

The CDC says that pregnant people are more likely to get severe illness from COVID-19 than people who are not pregnant. They also note that evidence that the COVID-19 vaccine is safe during pregnancy has been growing. The CDC says there is no evidence that any vaccines cause fertility problems in women or men.7

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Will vaccination sites have interpreters or translated materials?

The available services may vary by site. Once you know where you can be vaccinated, contact that site for more information on their services.

Or you can get interpretation services through AmeriHealth Caritas North Carolina at no cost to you by calling Member Services at 1-855-375-8811. TTY users should call 1-866-209-6421.

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Are there side effects to getting a COVID-19 vaccine?

The CDC says that you may have some side effects from getting a vaccine. These are normally signs that your body is building protection against the COVID-19 virus.8

The side effects should go away in a few days. Side effects after the second shot may affect you more than the ones after the first shot. Serious side effects that could cause a long-term health problem are extremely rare, and the benefits of getting a vaccine are high.8

Side effects may show up in the arm where you got the shot. They may also show up in the rest of your body. Common side effects include:8

  • Pain, redness, or swelling in your arm.
  • Tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, fever, or nausea.

Connect with your health care provider or pharmacist for more information on vaccine side effects. Your provider or pharmacist can let you know what to do if you notice side effects. You can also learn more on the CDC website.

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I'm afraid of needles. What can I do?

Getting a vaccine by needle can cause stress at any age. If you worry about getting a vaccine shot, you are not alone.

The CDC says that up to one-quarter of adults may have a fear of needles.9 A fear of needles can affect a person's health care over the long term. If you feel that you want to avoid getting a COVID-19 vaccine because of a fear of needles, try:10

  • Seeking the help of a therapist to work with you on reducing needle fear.
  • Talking about your fears with trusted friends or family.
  • Focusing on the benefits of getting the vaccine.
  • Distracting yourself with a video or song during your appointment.
  • Discussing your concerns with your health care provider.

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If I already have gotten the flu shot, does that protect me from COVID-19?

Getting a flu shot helps protect you from getting the flu, also called influenza. It does not protect you from COVID-19.11

The CDC recommends getting both the flu vaccine and a COVID-19 vaccine:1, 11

  • Everyone ages 6 months and older should get a flu vaccine each year, with rare exceptions.
  • Everyone ages 5 years and older should get a COVID-19 vaccine, with rare exceptions.

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Can I get a COVID-19 vaccine when I get another vaccine?

Yes. If your COVID-19 vaccine facility gives another vaccine for which you are eligible, you may receive it when you get a COVID-19 vaccine.11

If you have more questions on vaccine timing, contact your health care provider or pharmacist.

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Do I still need to wear a mask if I get a vaccine? Do I still need to follow other COVID-19 public health guidelines if I get a vaccine?

Wearing a mask can be important for many reasons. It helps protect you, your family members, and others. It may still be important for you to wear a mask after you are fully vaccinated.6

One reason to keep wearing a mask is if you are in an area of substantial or high risk of getting the COVID-19 virus. The CDC says that if you are in one of these areas, it's best to wear a mask indoors in public.6 This can best protect you from the COVID-19 virus, including new COVID-19 variants.

The CDC says it's also best to wear a mask indoors in public if you or someone in your household:6

  • Has a weakened immune system.
  • Is at higher risk for a severe COVID-19 infection because of age or a medical condition.
  • Is unvaccinated.

To learn more, visit the CDC website at www.cdc.gov. You can also visit your state public health website for the most up-to-date information. You can call the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567.

You should also continue to follow COVID-19 guidance in your community. For example, follow the guidance at your workplace and local businesses.

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What are COVID-19 variants? Does getting a COVID-19 vaccine protect me from them?

New versions of a virus emerge as the virus mutates and changes. These versions are called variants.

The CDC says that getting a vaccine helps prevent severe illness and death from the COVID-19 virus. COVID-19 variants like the delta and omicron variants.12, 13

The CDC urges people who have not yet gotten a COVID-19 vaccine to:1

  • Arrange to get a COVID-19 vaccine.
  • Continue wearing a mask until you are fully vaccinated.

To learn more about COVID-19 variants, visit the CDC website. You can also visit your state public health website for the most up-to-date information. You can call the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567.

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If I already had COVID-19 and recovered, do I still need to get a vaccine?

The CDC recommends getting a vaccine even if you have had COVID-19 and recovered. Getting a vaccine will give you the best protection. Talk with your health care provider or pharmacist about this decision.14

The CDC says that if you were treated for COVID-19 infection, you may have been treated with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma. If so, wait 90 days after those treatments finished before getting a COVID-19 vaccine. If you don't know what treatment you received, talk with your health care provider.14

You can get a COVID-19 vaccine at no cost to you. Need help with getting an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine shot? Call Member Services at 1-855-375-8811. TTY users should call 1-866-209-6421.

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Can getting a COVID-19 vaccine give me COVID-19?

You cannot get a COVID-19 infection from a COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccines do not have the active COVID-19 virus in them.15

If you would like to learn more about COVID-19 vaccines, visit the CDC website.

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If I get a vaccine, does everyone in my household have to get it?

The CDC recommends that everyone ages 5 and older get a COVID-19 vaccine. The best protection is for everyone in your household to get a vaccine.1

Follow COVID-19 vaccine guidance in your community. For example, follow the guidance at your workplace, schools, and local businesses.

You can get a COVID-19 vaccine at no cost to you. Need help with getting an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine shot? Call Member Services at 1-855-375-8811. TTY users should call 1-866-209-6421.

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What if I have other medical questions about the vaccines and how they work?

To learn more about COVID-19 vaccines, visit the CDC website. Or you can contact your health care provider or pharmacist for more information.

You can visit your state public health website for the most up-to-date information. You can also call the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567.

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Who shouldn't get a vaccine?

At this time, children 4 years old and younger should not get a COVID-19 vaccine.1

To learn more about COVID-19 vaccines, visit the CDC website. If you have other questions, contact your health care provider or pharmacist.

You can visit your state public health website for the most up-to-date information. You can also call the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 1-888-675-4567.

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What do I need to know for traveling during the pandemic?

The CDC says that if you are fully vaccinated, you are less likely to get and spread COVID-19. The CDC suggests that you delay travel until after you are fully vaccinated.16

The CDC recommends that all travelers follow guidelines for where you plan to travel. Some of these guidelines apply whether or not you have received a COVID-19 vaccine. They also apply for both domestic and international travel. For information on these guidelines, visit the CDC website.

Travel guidelines are changing frequently. Whether you travel within or outside of the United States, plan ahead. Make sure you understand the travel restrictions of each place on your route. The state, local, or national governments of your destinations may have rules for travel. Check the travel restrictions for your home area for when you return, too.

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Sources:

1. Benefits of Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine, CDC.
2. Different COVID-19 Vaccines, CDC.
3. How Do I Find a COVID-19 Vaccine?, CDC.
4. COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Shots, CDC.
5. COVID-19 Vaccines for Moderately to Severely Immunocompromised People, CDC.
6. When You've Been Fully Vaccinated, CDC.
7. COVID-19 Vaccines While Pregnant or Breastfeeding, CDC.
8. Possible Side Effects After Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine, CDC.
9. Vaccine Administration, CDC.
10. Interventions for Individuals With High Levels of Needle Fear, National Institutes of Health.
11. Frequently Asked Influenza (Flu) Questions: 2021 – 2022 Season, CDC.
12. What You Need to Know About Variants, CDC.
13. Variant Proportions, CDC.
14. Preparing for Your COVID-19 Vaccination, CDC.
15. Understanding How COVID-19 Vaccines Work, CDC.
16. Domestic Travel During COVID-19, CDC.

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