Have You Received Your Covid Vaccination?
RPCV Health Crusade continues to monitor the Covid-19 pandemic. The science shows that the covid vaccination helps minimize the number of deaths and critical symptoms requiring hospitalizations. The number of daily deaths is finally slowing down. But that does not mean the pandemic is over.
You need to decide for yourself on whether or not to get the Covid vaccine. You know your medical history. Talk to your medical provider about any concerns or potential complications. And, you may develop some symptoms after the covid vaccination. But, skipping the vaccine puts you and everyone around you at a higher risk of getting infected. If you decide to not get the vaccine, we hope that it is for health reasons and not for political affiliation or myths.
Is the Covid Vaccine Required?
The federal government and the CDC does not (currently) require you to get the Covid vaccination. But there could be state or other applicable laws on vaccinations. Also, your employer and other entities may require the vaccination before you can openly mingle with others at their locations.
And, there is chatter about a vaccine passport. This is different than the vaccination card you receive with the vaccine. That vaccination card shows the date and location of the vaccination. A vaccination confirmation could reward people with less restrictions. But, this could also penalize and ostracize those who are not medically able to receive the vaccine.
Where to Get the Covid Vaccination
RPCV Health Crusade previously assembled a list of covid testing locations by state, territory, and region. We wanted to help bridge the gap to lack of coordination on covid testing. But there is much better coordination and information across the country for covid vaccinations.
Vaccine Finder helps locate covid vaccination locations near you. Some pharmacies, grocery stores, health centers, and hospitals are verified covid vaccine providers.
As of April 19, 2021, all adults in the USA are now eligible for covid vaccination. And, many mass vaccination sites now offer walk-up vaccinations so you do not even need an appointment. However, if the vaccine you receive requires two doses, it helps to have that appointment for the 2nd shot.
Monitor For Side Effects After Your Covid Vaccination
When you get the covid vaccine, medical personnel will monitor you for 15-30 minutes. This is to check for immediate allergic reaction or other symptoms from the vaccination. Some people have experienced different side effects. Some side effects are mild and some more severe. Side effects after the second shot may be more intense that those from the first shot. But if your side effects concern you, contact a medical provider.
Talk to a medical provider before taking any over-the-counter or prescription medication with the vaccine. But avoid taking anything before the vaccine to try to prevent the covid vaccine side effects.
No Charge to You for the Covid Vaccination
All organizations participating in the CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Program:
- must administer COVID-19 Vaccine with no out-of-pocket cost to the recipient;
- may not deny anyone vaccination based on the vaccine recipient’s coverage status or network status;
- cannot charge an office visit or other fee if COVID-19 vaccination is the sole medical service provided;
- cannot require additional medical services to receive COVID-19 vaccination;
- may seek appropriate reimbursement from an insurance or government program/plan or HRSA that covers COVID-19 Vaccine administration fees for the vaccine recipient;
- cannot seek any reimbursement, including through balance billing, from the vaccine recipient.
Unfortunately there are some providers who are charging fees to the vaccine recipient (aka patient). But, providers who charge the patient for the Covid vaccine must refund those charges.
Covid At-Home Test Kits Now Available
Testing is still vital to reduce the spread of Covid. There are still Covid test sites nearby. And, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized a number of direct-to-consumer Covid-19 test kits that you can buy without a prescription. The test detects the presence (or absence) of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19. You can choose from nasal or saliva collection testing options.
According to the CDC, over 66 million people are fully vaccinated. However, some cities and states are experiencing a rise in the number of infected people. Thousands of people still tested positive for Covid after full vaccination. So if you experience symptoms or have been around someone who is infected, get tested.
Be Careful of Fraud and Abuse
Unfortunately, there are people looking to take advantage of other people who are in a vulnerable position. They will try to contact you through telemarketing schemes, text messages, social media platforms, and even door-to-door visits. They are looking to steal personal information and/or money by exploiting fear and confusion. Be deligent.
You cannot buy the vaccine over the internet. You do not have to pay for the Covid vaccination. There is no charge for the vaccine card. Do not share your vaccine card on social media. Also, you cannot buy your way into an earlier appointment or eligibility. And, Medicare will not call about Covid related benefits or products. So report anyone offering any of these options.
Continue Those Safety Protocols
We are not out of this yet! It takes time for your body to build up the needed protection. The CDC considers you fully vaccinated after two weeks following your full dosage. However, there is a lot that is still unknown about this virus and the vaccines.
We are all tired. Covid fatigue is real. But now is not the time to drop our guard. People across the country and around the world are still getting infected. People are still getting hospitalized. And unfortunately, people are still dying from Covid. If infected, you may not exhibit symptoms but you could still infect others.
A year ago, we could not see the light at the end of the tunnel. But now we can. So wash your hands. Wear a mask. Stay physically distant. Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated spaces. Let’s continue the safety protocols for a little while longer.