Vaccine FAQs

Last updated November 9, 2021


General COVID-19 Vaccine Questions

Who is eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine?

COVID-19 vaccines are recommended for everyone 5 years old and up!

Who needs a booster dose or additional dose?

For those who received an mRNA (Pfizer or Moderna) COVID-19 vaccine: The following groups are eligible for a booster shot at six months or more after their initial series: adults 65+, adults 18+ who live in long-term care settings, adults 18+ who have underlying medical conditions, and adults 18+ who work or live in high-risk settings.

For those who received a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine:  Individuals should get a COVID-19 booster dose at least two months after their initial dose.

For those with moderately to severely compromised immune systems who received Pfizer or Moderna initially: As previously recommended, people with moderately to severely compromised immune systems should receive an additional dose of mRNA COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna) at least 28 days after a second dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. This additional dose is intended to improve the response of people who are immunocompromised to their initial vaccine series.

See more details here

Those eligible for a booster may choose which vaccine they receive as a booster dose from the Health Department. For questions about which booster to receive, we recommend speaking with your own health care provider for advice. As stated above, pop-up clinics may not have all three boosters available (see clinic details below for more info).

Will we still need to wear a mask, social distance, and wash our hands often as more people get vaccinated?

Once you're fully vaccinated, you should take extra precautions when community transmission is high or substantial. As of 11/9/21, Washtenaw County is in a "high" level of community transmission. Because of this, we strongly recommend everyone (including vaccinated people) wear masks in indoor public settings and crowded outdoor settings. 

See more about what is safe to do when you're fully vaccinated from the CDC here and here

Will there be a cost for getting a COVID-19 vaccine?

COVID-1 vaccines are free! There will be no cost to individuals for the COVID-19 vaccination.

How many doses of COVID-19 vaccine are needed?

Being fully vaccinated means having 2 doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or 1 dose of the Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccine. Boosters or additional doses are recommended for some.

If I already had COVID-19, should I still get the vaccine?

Yes! COVID-19 vaccines can provide more reliable, consistent immunity than "natural" immunity. Current evidence suggests that people who have had COVID-19 may be protected for up to 90 days after their initial infection, so they may decide to wait until after this period, if desired.

I'm pregnant or breastfeeding - is it safe to get the COVID-19 vaccine?

Yes! COVID-19 vaccines are important for those pregnant or breastfeeding. Learn more here

Can children under 5 be vaccinated?

Not yet. The Pfizer vaccine is authorized for individuals age 5 years and older, and the Moderna and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccines are authorized for individuals age 18 years and older. There are clinical trials underway for younger kids now but those vaccines are not available yet.

Is it okay to take ibuprofen or acetaminophen after getting the vaccine?

The guidelines for the vaccine state that antipyretic or analgesic medications (e.g., acetaminophen, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen) may be taken after the vaccine for any discomfort. However, taking these medications before being vaccinated for the purpose of preventing post-vaccination symptoms is not recommended. Information on the impact of such use on COVID-19 vaccine-induced antibody response is not available at this time.

Washtenaw County Health Department (WCHD) COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic Questions

What vaccine does WCHD have?

WCHD is administering Pfizer, Moderna, and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccines. 

Can I choose which vaccine I get?

Yes. All three vaccines are safe and effective. We list what vaccine will be provided at each of our clinics on our website. If you would prefer a specific vaccine, you can choose to schedule at a clinic with that vaccine. 

I got my first dose of vaccine somewhere else. Can I get my second dose from WCHD?

If you have already gotten your 1st dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, you should get your 2nd dose from the same provider. If that is not possible, you may come to one of the vaccine clinics on our vaccination page. Be sure to check the listing for a clinic providing the brand you need. Bring your shot record card.

What accommodations are available for those who might have trouble getting through clinics?

Assistance or wheelchairs may be available for those who may need additional support. Please let us know when you arrive if you need any additional support or reach out before you arrive to request special accommodations.

How can homebound individuals get vaccinated?

We have a Nurse on the Run mobile team that can provide vaccination in individuals in their homes if they meet program criteria. To request this support, please call 734-544-6700 or email [email protected].

COVID-19 Vaccine Record Questions

I lost my vaccine card after getting vaccinated. How can I get a record of my COVID-19 vaccination?

We are not able to replace lost or damaged vaccine cards. However, we record all vaccinations that we administer in a statewide database called the Michigan Care Improvement Registry (MCIR). You can contact your primary care physician to get a copy of your MCIR record, which will include your COVID-19 vaccine information. If you do not have a primary care physician, see our Immunization Records page for other options to obtain your records.

I am traveling overseas and I need a letter or a certificate saying I have been vaccinated. Can you provide this?

No. We are not able to provide letters or certificates to individuals at this time. Please contact your primary care physician for a copy of your official vaccination record from Michigan Care Improvement Registry (MCIR), which is the statewide database for immunizations for Michigan residents. If you do not have a primary care physician, see our Immunization Records page for other options to obtain your records.

I was vaccinated in another state but I live in Michigan. How can I update my vaccine records?

Bring your vaccination card to your primary care provider's office and request that they update your record in the Michigan Care Improvement registry (MCIR), which is the statewide database for immunizations for Michigan residents. If you do not have a primary care provider, please sit tight. The State of Michigan is working on a reciprocal agreement with other states that would provide for updated immunization records.  

My school/workplace requires me to either get a COVID-19 vaccine or to turn in a vaccine waiver. Can I get a waiver from the health department?

The Washtenaw County Health Department is not providing waivers for the COVID-19 vaccine.