COVID-19 Vaccine Update: 

We are scheduling Pfizer and Moderna appointments for all eligible community members (16+ for Pfizer and 18+ for Moderna). Due to high demand, there are longer wait times for vaccine appointments. Thank you for your patience. Visit our FAQ to learn about the Johnson & Johnson vaccine pause.

 

 

We will update this webpage with new information as it becomes available.
Updated April 21, 2021

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UW Medicine COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker

Provider vaccine tracker
230,728
 — Vaccines administered
Person vaccine tracker
127,101
 — People who have received their first dose
Person vaccine tracker
103,627
 — People who have received their second dose

How to make an appointment

How to make an appointment

We are scheduling first-dose vaccinations for all eligible community members (16 years and older) via our vaccine appointment waitlist. To join the waitlist, call 844.520.8700.

How the waitlist w orks

  • We will contact you by phone call or text message when it is time to make your appointment. At that time, you’ll be asked a series of questions.
  • You will then be offered the choice of scheduling with one of our representatives (by phone) or online using a provided single-use link.
  • The fastest way to get an appointment is the online option
  • If you have already added yourself to the vaccine appointment line waitlist, you do not need to add yourself again.

We will not be accepting walk-ins at any UW Medicine vaccination site, hospital or clinic.

Please do not call our Contact Center or our clinics for COVID-19 vaccine appointments.

Get on the vaccine waitlist

We will contact you by phone call or text message when it is time to make your appointment. At that time, you’ll be asked a series of questions and then offered the choice of scheduling with one of our representatives or online using a provided single-use link.

Sign-up for a second dose

If you received your first dose at another location and are unable to return there for your second dose, we may be able to help. Please call us and select option 3 to learn about second-dose appointment options.

Join the vaccine standby list

UW Medicine has created a vaccine standby list to ensure that all COVID-19 vaccine doses are used at the end of each vaccination clinic. This is separate from our appointment waitlist and has different eligibility requirements.

Find clinics, pharmacies and other locations that offer COVID-19 vaccines

Find clinics, pharmacies and other locations that offer COVID-19 vaccines

VaccineFinder

This tool provides you with a link to schedule an appointment through the location’s website or with a phone number to call to make an appointment.

Vaccine Locator

This Department of Health website shows available vaccine appointments across the state in real-time. Data is gathered by volunteers at COVIDWA.com.

Questions or concerns after getting vaccinated

Questions or concerns after getting vaccinated

If you are experiencing a life-threatening allergic reaction to the vaccine, call 911.

For any other questions about vaccine symptoms, please call your primary care provider or the UW Medicine nurse line at 206.520.7555.

If you do not have a primary care provider, UW Medicine has primary care locations across the Puget Sound.

 

Information about scheduling

How do I confirm the day and time of my scheduled vaccine appointment?

You will receive an email at the time of scheduling with appointment details. You may also check the day and time of your appointment in MyChart. As your appointment nears, you will receive a reminder message by phone or text.

Scheduling your second dose

Within 48 hours of your first dose, we will send you an email notification with the appointment date and time of your second COVID-19 vaccine dose if a second dose is required. We will also send you a reminder three days before the appointment.

See below for more information on rescheduling or canceling your appointment.

If you received the Pfizer vaccine, we will schedule your second dose 21 days after your first dose, with a four-day grace period. If you received the Moderna vaccine, we will schedule your second dose 28 days after your first dose, with a four-day grace period. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine does not have a second dose.

If you received your first dose at another location, you can schedule your second dose at UW Medicine by calling 206.520.8700 and selecting option 3.

Rescheduling an appointment

You can reschedule your COVID-19 vaccine appointments through MyChart. Log in and click on the "Visits" page. Find your vaccine appointment and follow the instructions to reschedule.

We also send phone appointment reminders that offer rescheduling. To reschedule from an appointment reminder, follow the instructions and respond by calling the number provided. Rescheduling via text is not supported.

You may also cancel your appointment by calling 206.520.8700 for UW Medical Center – Montlake, UW Medical Center – Northwest and Harborview Medical Center or 425.690.3630 for Valley Medical Center.

Canceling an appointment

We appreciate when you take the time to cancel your appointment. Doing so frees up space for another eligible person.

You can cancel your COVID-19 vaccine appointment through MyChart (your online medical record). To cancel using MyChart, log in and click on the "Visits" page. Find your vaccine appointment and follow the cancellation instructions.

We will also send phone and text appointment reminders that offer cancellation. You can cancel from an appointment reminder by following the instructions and responding through text or call.

You may also cancel your appointment by calling 206.520.8700 for UW Medical Center – Montlake, UW Medical Center – Northwest and Harborview Medical Center or 425.690.3630 for Valley Medical Center.

General

Frequently asked questions about COVID-19 vaccines

General


The COVID-19 vaccine teaches your immune system to recognize the coronavirus. When you get the vaccine, your immune system makes antibodies (“fighter cells”) against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, that stay in your blood and protect you in case you are infected with the virus. You get protection against the disease without having to get sick. When enough people in the community can fight off the coronavirus — something called herd or population immunity — it has nowhere to go. This means we can stop the spread more quickly and get closer to ending the pandemic.

HOW VACCINES WORK IN YOUR BODY VIDEO


There are three types of vaccines against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

RNA vaccines:

The SARS-CoV-2 gene that creates the spike protein can be used in the form of DNA or messenger RNA (mRNA) as a vaccine. This type of vaccine trains our body to recognize and fight the protein. Once the body does this, it then discards the mRNA.

The vaccines manufactured by Pfizer and Moderna use this approach. These vaccines are authorized for emergency use in the U.S.

Protein vaccines:

Harmless pieces of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein are used to make this vaccine. This type of vaccine is also used for whooping cough (pertussis) and hepatitis B.

The vaccine being produced by Novavax uses this approach. It is in Phase 3 clinic trials in the U.S.

Vector vaccines:

The SARS-CoV-2 gene that creates the spike protein is inserted into a harmless virus to deliver the gene to human cells. The spike protein then stimulates immune responses. Adenoviruses, which cause common cold-like symptoms, are often used as the viral vector for these types of vaccines.

The vaccines manufactured by AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson use this approach.

LEARN ABOUT JOHNSON & JOHNSON VACCINE 


All the vaccines are highly effective at preventing hospitalizations and death.

Each COVID-19 vaccine has a different level of efficacy against milder disease. The vaccines in use or in Phase 3 clinical trials have an efficacy ranging between 57% and 95% in preventing symptomatic infection.

Efficacy is the measure used in clinical trials. Effectiveness is how well the vaccine works in the outside world at preventing illness.

Vaccine effectiveness also varies based on COVID-19 variants or mutations. We know that some of the vaccines are less effective against the variants first found in Brazil, South Africa and the U.K.

A vaccine does not need high effectiveness to make a significant impact. The seasonal flu vaccine prevents millions of illnesses and thousands of deaths each year. According to the CDC, its effectiveness ranges between 40% to 60% each year. COVID-19 vaccines are at least as effective or more effective as the flu vaccine.


COVID-19 variants are emerging and proving to be more contagious than the original coronavirus. The current Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are still effective against these new variants.

Mutations are making COVID-19 better at latching onto human cells. This makes it spread more easily from person to person. It requires a smaller amount of virus and less time in the same room with an infected person for someone to catch the mutated coronavirus.

It's important to take all precautions to prevent transmission of the new variants:

  • Wear a mask with multiple layers
  • Maintain physical distance from others
  • Practice good hand hygiene


We believe that getting vaccinated against COVID-19 will help prevent you from getting seriously ill even if you get infected with the virus. Vaccination helps reduce the spread of a virus and protects the people around you, including people who are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.


Based on what we know about viruses, we think it will help. Stopping a pandemic requires us to use all the tools we have available, including masks, physical distancing and vaccines to help limit the spread.


Herd or population immunity is a term used to describe when enough people have protection from a virus or bacteria — either from previous infection or vaccination — that it is unlikely the disease can spread. As a result, everyone within the community is protected even if some people don't have any protection themselves. The percentage of people who need to have protection in order to achieve herd immunity varies by disease.

Experts do not know what percentage of people would need to get vaccinated to achieve herd immunity to COVID-19.

Availability

Availability


Anyone 16 years or older is eligible to receive the vaccine. The Pfizer vaccine is approved for anyone 16 years and old. The Moderna vaccine is approved for people 18 years and older.

Younger teens and children are not yet eligible.

Learn more about vaccination plans


Currently, UW Medicine is offering the vaccines developed by Pfizer and Moderna.


You should get the vaccine available to you when you are eligible to schedule your vaccination.

All the vaccines are safe and effective. They all prevent severe illness and death.

Safety

Safety


COVID-19 vaccines are being carefully evaluated in clinical trials and will only be allowed for use if the FDA considers them safe and effective.

According to the Washington State Department of Health, since we’re in a pandemic, developing a new vaccine can go faster than normal. No steps are skipped, but some steps happen at the same time, like applications, trials and manufacturing.

You may have heard the term "emergency use authorization." This is one of the tools the FDA is using to make critical medical products, including tests and vaccines, available quickly during the pandemic. It helps speed up the process of approval, clearance and licensing.

Safety and efficacy (how well the vaccine works to protect you) are determined by clinical trials. After clinical trials, medical experts examine test results and any side effects. If the vaccine works and is safe, it will get approved for distribution to the public.

Washington state has joined other western states, the Western States Scientific Review Group, to do an additional expert review of the clinical trials' results to make sure the vaccine is ready for distribution.

Watch these videos to learn more about how vaccines are approved:

HOW COVID-19 VACCINES ARE MADE

WHAT IS AN EMERGENCY USE AUTHORIZATION?


No, it is not possible to get COVID-19 from vaccines. The new COVID-19 vaccines use inactivated SARS-CoV-2 virus, parts of the virus (like the spike protein) or a gene from the virus. None of these can cause COVID-19.

Special circumstances

Special circumstances


Yes. However, if you have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 90 days, we recommend that you wait until 90 days have passed since infection. This allows others who remain at higher risk for infection to be vaccinated first. Current evidence suggests reinfection is uncommon 90 days after the initial infection.


Right now, teenagers aged 16 years and older are eligible for vaccination and may receive the Pfizer vaccine.

The Food and Drug Administration has not yet authorized the Moderna vaccine for anyone under 18. Clinical trials are currently studying the safety and effectiveness of vaccinating children against COVID-19.

When scheduling an appointment for a teenager under 18, please remember to only schedule at locations that can provide the Pfizer vaccine.


Pregnant and breastfeeding women should get the vaccine once it is available to them. We know that:

  • Pregnant or breastfeeding women were not included in the COVID-19 clinical trials.
  • The risk of maternal or fetal harm from an mRNA vaccine is unknown but thought to be low.
  • COVID-19 disease carries an increased risk in pregnancy. This is particularly true for patients with obesity or other medical conditions.

The UW Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Society of Maternal-Fetal Medicine and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists support offering the COVID-19 vaccine to pregnant and breastfeeding patients.

Please speak to your doctor if you are concerned or have more questions.


COVID-19 vaccination is not required before surgery or other procedures.

If you want to be vaccinated prior to surgery, please follow this guidance:

  • Avoid getting the COVID-19 vaccine within seven days before elective surgery. It is common to have some COVID-19-like symptoms after vaccination. These symptoms would lead to potential delays in the procedure, a need for more testing or both. 
  • You may have surgery if you've received the vaccine three to six days before if you have not developed symptoms (such as fevers, chills, myalgias, headache).
  • Avoid getting vaccinated in the same area of your body where you are having surgery. Delayed vaccine site reactions can occur and can appear like a local infection.
  • Avoid scheduling elective surgery within 48 hours of vaccination. If you've been vaccinated within 48 hours of your scheduled surgery, it is OK to proceed if you don't have symptoms. Urgent surgeries should not be delayed because of the vaccine.
  • If the second dose of vaccine conflicts with your planned surgery, it is OK to delay the second dose until after you've recovered. The second vaccine dose may be given up to 42 days after the initial dose.

What to expect

What to expect


Most of the vaccines need two shots to be effective. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine only requires one shot.


While it is best to get your second dose within the recommended time frame, it may not always be possible.

It is OK to receive the second dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines up to six weeks (42 days) after the first dose. There is limited data on efficacy of mRNA COVID-19 vaccines administered beyond this window.

But if the second dose is given late, there is no need to restart the series.


According to the CDC, every effort should be made to receive the same vaccine product for your first and second dose.

In exceptional situations, such as when the vaccine used for the first dose is not available, then any available mRNA COVID-19 vaccine may be administered. This should be done at a minimum interval of 28 days between doses to complete the vaccine series.

If you receive your first and second doses from different vaccine products, you are done with the series. No extra doses of either vaccine are recommended.


Vaccine side effects may be unpleasant but are not dangerous. In clinical trials, some people experienced fever, muscle pain, joint pain, fatigue and headaches. Most people will not experience side effects that prevent daily activity.

Some people who have received the Moderna vaccine reported delayed allergic reactions. These reactions occur at or near the site of injection on their arm around 5 to 7 days after vaccination. Symptoms included redness, rash or swelling. You may still receive the second dose of vaccine if you have had this type of reaction.

Before receiving either vaccine, please let your doctor know if you've had severe allergic reactions in the past.


We don’t know yet. Both natural immunity and vaccine-induced immunity are important aspects of COVID-19 that experts are trying to learn more about.


Yes. To prevent unvaccinated people from getting sick, it's important to continue washing your hands, wearing a mask, staying 6 feet apart and limiting gatherings until enough people have received the vaccine.

We know vaccination will prevent you from getting sick, but we do not know if the vaccine will prevent you from spreading the virus to others yet.


UW Medicine is not charging for COVID-19 vaccinations.

The federal government is providing the vaccine free of charge to all people living in the United States, regardless of their immigration or health insurance status.

COVID-19 Resources

Community Conversation About Vaccine Safety

This conversation was hosted by the Office of Healthcare Equity and UW Medicine Infectious Disease experts and recorded on March 2, 2021. The video includes general information about the vaccines as well as a Q&A session from attendees.

WATCH THE VIDEO

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