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While exactly how and where to sign up for a vaccination appointment varies based on your state and province, the majority of vaccine registrations are done online – which is also a barrier to access to vaccines for the elderly and people of color. . Because vaccine eligibility and rollout is a constantly evolving topic, there are several tools and resources that are trying to make the process easier to navigate. Keep reading below to find out where to start if you’re looking for a vaccination appointment and other tips for navigating the process.
How to Get a COVID-19 Vaccination Appointment
The first step to finding a vaccination appointment is to determine if you qualify. Eligibility depends on your state, so check with your local health department by visiting the website or calling if you are unsure of your eligibility. Vaccines.gov is a good place to start by finding your health department and finding out your state’s eligibility requirements.
You can also use the VaccineFinder tool to find pharmacies, clinics, and other places in your area that distribute the vaccine. If you’re not currently eligible to get vaccinated, stay in touch with your state health department for updated guidelines – especially since President Biden recently directed states to qualify for vaccination for all adults by May 1.
The administration also announced plans to launch a Find a Vaccine website and a 1-800 toll-free phone number to help Americans find a vaccine appointment – but we don’t know exactly when the site will launch, except at around 1 May. .
Once you find vaccine suppliers near you, see if you can sign up for updates or ask if they have a list and can call you if a vaccine is available. It’s also helpful to follow the local providers and your national health departments on social media, as they often post vaccine updates. Unfortunately, not everyone will announce when they are getting more vaccines, so sometimes the best strategy is to check in regularly or call the vaccine providers in your area.
Also consult your doctor or other health care providers, as some clinics and doctor’s offices also have vaccines and may be able to help you find a vaccination appointment there.
How to schedule a vaccine at a pharmacy
Pharmacies, including CVS, Walmart Pharmacy, and Walgreens, distribute COVID-19 vaccines, and each pharmacy has its own application or appointment procedure.
If you are struggling to find an appointment on these websites, the best strategy for now is to keep checking the appointment sites daily to try to make new appointments as they are added. You can also try following your local pharmacies on social media if they have local accounts. If all else fails, give them a call and ask for updates on vaccine availability and ask if you can be added to a waiting list so you’ll be notified when new appointments are added.
CVS Pharmacy and some Target locations with CVS Pharmacies distribute vaccines. The vaccines are by appointment only and you can schedule them online.
Schedule an appointment at CVS here
Walmart Pharmacy and some Sam’s Club locations offer vaccines by appointment. You must schedule the vaccine online through Walmart’s vaccine planner.
Schedule an appointment at Walmart here.
Schedule an appointment at Sam’s Club here.
Walgreens offers vaccines in select locations. To find out more about availability, you can check your state is on the website and then create a Walgreens account to find appointments or sign up for updates on vaccines in your area.
Make an appointment with Walgreens here.
Sign up for Walgreens vaccine updates here.
Waiting lists for leftover vaccines
COVID-19 vaccines are in high demand, but sometimes providers are given extra doses due to no-shows, cancellations, or other logistical issues. After a vial of vaccine has been opened, the vaccine should be dispensed or discarded within a specified timeframe. For this reason, many people want to get on waiting lists or standby lines to get leftover vaccines. Getting a leftover shot is like winning the lottery – it’s possible, but not very likely. A number of tools are popping up that can give you alerts when additional doses may be available, making the process easier and less risky than queuing up with other unvaccinated people.
One resource for finding additional vaccine doses is Dr. B, a standby list for leftover vaccines. Once you register on the site, you will be placed on a standby list for additional doses in your area. Dr. B works with local providers to determine availability, and when vaccines open they will text you and you must respond within 15 minutes to confirm the appointment. To register, you must list your eligibility status, which is how Dr. B priority to people on the list based on state guidelines.
The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended to be health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health care practitioner if you have any questions about a medical condition or health goals.