Panhandle Health District 800-878-2364

Coronavirus – Vaccine Information

  • Vaccination is by appointment only. Please use the buttons below to schedule your appointment. Firefox or Chrome browsers work best for scheduling.
  • Schedule your vaccine appointment at the vaccine clinic nearest you. The state of Idaho is now requiring that those seeking COVID-19 vaccines in the state should either live or work in Idaho.
  • Patients should bring proof of age and employment (if applicable to the phase), insurance information, and proof that they live or work in Idaho. If you do not meet the criteria, you will not be provided vaccination at the vaccine clinic.
  • Walk-ups are not eligible at this time and we are not maintaining a wait list. Do not make multiple appointments. Please do not schedule unless you are able to make the appointment. If you need to cancel your appointment, please do so at least 24 hours in advance by calling 877-415-5225.
  • If you do not have internet access, please call our hotline for assistance 877-415-5225
  • Additional appointments will be made available each Wednesday at 9am.

Please schedule your appointment at the vaccine clinic nearest you!

Vaccine Distribution

Vaccine Phases: Vaccine Clinic Locations can be found below

Phase 1a

In- Progress

Vaccine Clinic Locations for Phase 1a beginning February 1

  • Hospital staff essential for care of COVID-19 patients
  • Long-term care facility residents and staff (vaccine administration provided through the Pharmacy Partnership Program)
  • Outpatient & Inpatient clinic/medical staff who are unable to telework
  • Home healthcare providers
  • Emergency Medical Services
  • Dentists, dental hygienists, and dental assistants
  • Pharmacists, pharmacy techs, and pharmacy aides
  • Emergency management response workers who are unable to telework
  • Coroners
  • First Responders
  • School Nurses

Phase 1b

In-progress

Vaccine Clinic Locations for Phase 1b beginning February 1. These clinics are for all Phase 1b except the Frontline Essential Workers, which are expected to begin receiving the vaccine in late February or Early March

Phase 1b includes these groups in this priority order:

  • Pre-K-12 School Employees
  • Childcare Workers
  • Correctional & Detention Facility Staff
  • Adults age 65 and older (beginning February)
  • Frontline Essential Workers including: (beginning early April)

Food & Agriculture

Manufacturing

Corrections Workers

U.S. Postal Service Workers

Public Transit Workers

Grocery Store Workers

Phase 1c

Estimated Start: Late April
  • Persons ages 16-64 with high-risk medical conditions that increase the risk for severe COVID-19
  • Essential workers not included in previous phases

General Population

Estimated Start: May
  • Vaccine available to the general public 16 years of age and older
  • ACIP will consider recommendations for children ≤ 15 years of age when a COVID-19 vaccine is authorized for use in that age group

Frequently Asked Questions

It’s important to keep in mind that the number of doses reported includes second doses, which are earmarked for those who have received their first dose already. Some weeks we receive these 2nd doses 1-3 weeks in advance, so even though they show up in our inventory as not administered they are spoken for. It’s also important to note that PHD receives shipments of vaccine that are distributed to over a dozen enrolled providers in our area. As each provider is setting up, preparing for, and scheduling appointments for their vaccine clinics, they rely on us to store their shipments until they are ready to administer.

As the vaccine shipments our district has received have been varied as far as number of doses, we have often needed to quickly scale our clinics up or down accordingly while also distributing the vaccine equitably among our partners. For the first dose vaccine clinics that PHD hosts, we receive the vaccine the week prior to the clinic it is administered at. For our second dose clinics, we have been receiving those shipments anywhere from 1-3 weeks in advance of it being needed to be administered.

Our area (5 northern counties) will be receiving 4,350 doses of vaccine each week.

The COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Committee is making recommendations to the governor about the priority groups that are based on the recommendations from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.  The current timeline reflects those priority groups. A summary of the phases voted on so far can be found here: https://coronavirus.idaho.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/CVAC-Prioritization-for-HCP-and-Essential-Workers.pdf.

Questions and comments regarding prioritization can be sent to covid19vaccinepubliccomment@dhw.idaho.gov.

The VA is working with the CDC and other federal partners to develop a phased plan.

Under this plan, the VA is now offering vaccines to these 2 groups:

  • Veterans living in their long-term care facilities, and
  • VA health care personnel. Vaccinating our VA health care personnel helps them continue providing care for Veterans.

After these first 2 groups, the VA will begin to offer vaccines to more Veterans who are at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19.

If you’re eligible to get a vaccine, your VA health care team will contact you. You don’t need to reserve a vaccine, or come to a VA facility to request or receive a vaccine until they contact you. VA staff will only provide vaccines to Veterans who are currently eligible for one based on VA and CDC risk criteria.

You should discuss your concerns with your healthcare provider to determine what is best for you. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers clinical guidance on the first (Pfizer) vaccine.

In Idaho, the number of vaccine doses that have been administered is reported at coronavirus.idaho.gov

You are considered immune 2 weeks after you receive your 2nd dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. You do not need to self-quarantine if you are exposed AND it has been at least 2 weeks since your 2nd shot of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine. If you are exposed before this time, you need to self-quarantine.

The first priority phase to be vaccinated in Idaho, includes healthcare workers and residents of long-term care facilities. Skilled nurses and those working in assisted living and intermediate care facilities are counted as healthcare workers in this phase. More specifically, the initial shipment of vaccine is destined for hospital staff and outpatient clinic staff who provide care for COVID-19 patients. The facilities will determine a schedule for their workers.

The Idaho COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Committee (CVAC) has made recommendations on which populations should be prioritized for the second phase. CVAC is recommending the following types of essential workers be prioritized for vaccination in the second phase in the following order:

  • First responders, including fire, police, protective services and community support personnel.
  • Pre-K-12school staff and teachers and daycare workers
  • Correctional and detention facility staff, except medical staff already in Phase 1a
  • Food processing workers
  • Grocery and convenience store workers
  • Idaho National Guard
  • Other essential workers not already included and unable to telework or social distance at work

The CDC has a provider vaccination enrollment program. Any Idaho facility, organization, or healthcare provider licensed to possess or administer vaccine or provide vaccination services is eligible to enroll. The enrollment process consists of completion of the CDC’s COVID-19 Vaccination Program Provider Agreement, Supplemental COVID-19 Vaccine Redistribution Agreement, and completing provider training. Information can be found through the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare’s website: healthandwelfare.idaho.gov/providers/immunization-providers/covid-19-vaccination-providers

v-safe is a new smartphone-based tool that uses text messaging and web surveys to check-in with vaccinated individuals for adverse events after a COVID-19 vaccination. v-safe will also provide second-dose reminders (if needed) and live telephone follow up by the CDC if vaccinated individuals report a medically significant event during a v-safe check-in. Enrollment is voluntary.

 

Protection from Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is not immediate; the vaccine is a 2-dose series and it takes 1 to 2 weeks following the second dose before a person is considered fully vaccinated. Because the median incubation period of SARS-CoV2 is 4–5 days, current evidence suggests that vaccination of persons following a known SARS-CoV-2 exposure is unlikely to be an effective strategy for preventing disease from that particular exposure.

Thus, persons in the community or outpatient setting who have had a known COVID-19 exposure should not seek vaccination until their quarantine period has ended to avoid potentially exposing healthcare personnel and other persons to SARS-CoV-2 during the vaccination visit.

CDC continuously monitors the safety of vaccines given in the United States. The Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), co-administered by the CDC and the Food and Drug Administration, is the national frontline monitoring system for vaccine safety. VAERS is a national early warning system to detect possible safety problems with vaccines. Anyone – a doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or any member of the general public – can submit a report to VAERS. COVID-19 Vaccine Providers are required to report adverse events to VAERS.

Panhandle Health District
Kootenai Health
Northwest Specialty Hospital
Bonner General Health
Kootenai County EMS System
Heritage Health
Benewah Community Hospital
Kaniksu Health
Sandpoint Family Health Center
Safeway CDA
Boundary Community Hospital
Sandpoint Super Drug
White Cross Pharmacy
Medicine Man Boundary
Shoshone Medical Center
North Idaho Advanced Care Hospital
Kootenai Tribal Clinic

The Pfizer vaccine is only recommended for those 16 years old and older. The Moderna vaccine is recommended for those 18 years old and older.

None of the COVID-19 vaccines currently in development in the United States use the live virus that causes COVID-19. There are several different types of vaccines in development. However, the goal for each of them is to teach our immune systems how to recognize and fight the virus that causes COVID-19. Sometimes this process can cause symptoms, such as fever. These symptoms are normal and are a sign that the body is building immunity.

Vaccines currently in clinical trials in the United States won’t cause you to test positive on viral tests, which are used to see if you have a current infection.

If your body develops an immune response, which is the goal of vaccination, there is a possibility you may test positive on some antibody tests. Antibody tests indicate you had a previous infection and that you may have some level of protection against the virus. Experts are currently looking at how COVID-19 vaccination may affect antibody testing results.

Yes. Data from phase 2/3 clinical trials suggest that Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is safe and likely efficacious in persons with evidence of a prior SARS-CoV-2 infection. Vaccination should be offered to persons regardless of history of prior symptomatic or asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection.

At this time, experts do not know how long someone is protected from getting sick again after recovering from COVID-19. The immunity someone gains from having an infection, called natural immunity, varies from person to person. Some early evidence suggests natural immunity may not last very long.

Getting COVID-19 may offer some natural protection, known as immunity. But experts don’t know how long this protection lasts, and the risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19 far outweighs any benefits of natural immunity. COVID-19 vaccination will help protect you by creating an antibody response without having to experience sickness.

Both natural immunity and immunity produced by a vaccine are important aspects of COVID-19 that experts are trying to learn more about, and CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.

The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses. The Johnson and Johnson (Janssen) COVID-19 vaccine is a single dose shot.

Yes. While experts learn more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide under real-life conditions, it will be important for everyone to continue using all the tools available to us to help stop this pandemic, like covering your mouth and nose with a mask, washing hands often, and staying at least 6 feet away from others. Experts need to understand more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide before deciding to change recommendations on steps everyone should take to slow the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19. Other factors, including how many people get vaccinated and how the virus is spreading in communities, will also affect this decision.

Based on available data, COVID-19 vaccination is expected to elicit general post-vaccination symptoms, such as fever, headache, and body aches. The incidence and timing of post-vaccination symptoms will be further informed by phase III clinical trial data.

For example, these types of symptoms are also common for influenza vaccine. You may hear people state they “got the flu from the flu vaccine.” However, the flu vaccine is given during a time of year when upper respiratory infections are more common and getting a bad cold or upper respiratory infection around the time of receiving a flu shot is likely.

All of the vaccines in clinical trials in the U.S. do not contain live viruses, and so would be unable to cause COVID-19 in a vaccine recipient.

Adverse reactions reported in a clinical trial following administration of the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine include pain at the injection site, fatigue, headache, muscle aches, joint pain, chills, nausea/vomiting, lymph node swelling/tenderness, fever, swelling at the injection site, and redness at the injection site.

There isn’t any evidence from trials of the Pfizer vaccine that it affects fertility. As the vaccine stimulates an immune response to the spike protein, if it did affect fertility we might also expect to see Covid-19 infections affecting this too, as the body should produce a similar immune response if infected. But we don’t.

As a condition of receiving free COVID-19 vaccines from the federal government, providers will be prohibited from charging consumers for administration of the vaccine. To ensure broad and consistent coverage across programs and payers, the toolkits have specific information for several programs, including:

Medicare: Beneficiaries with Medicare pay nothing for COVID-19 vaccines and their copayment/coinsurance and deductible are waived.

Medicare Advantage (MA): For calendar years 2020 and 2021, Medicare will pay directly for the COVID-19 vaccine and its administration for beneficiaries enrolled in MA plans. MA plans would not be responsible for reimbursing providers to administer the vaccine during this time.   Medicare Advantage beneficiaries also pay nothing for COVID-19 vaccines and their copayment/coinsurance and deductible are waived.

Medicaid: State Medicaid and CHIP agencies must provide vaccine administration with no cost sharing for most beneficiaries during the public health emergency.  Following the public health emergency, depending on the population, states may have to evaluate cost sharing policies and may have to submit state plan amendments if updates are needed.

Private Plans: CMS, along with the Departments of Labor and the Treasury, is requiring that most private health plans and issuers cover a recommended COVID-19 vaccine and its administration, both in-network and out-of-network, with no cost sharing. The rule also provides that out-of-network rates cannot be unreasonably low, and references CMS’s reimbursement rates as a potential guideline for insurance companies.

Uninsured: For individuals who are uninsured, providers will be able to be reimbursed for administering the COVID-19 vaccine to individuals without insurance through the Provider Relief Fund, administered by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).

The COVID-19 vaccine’s currently seeking authorization are mRNA vaccines. They do not affect or interact with our DNA in any way.

  • mRNA never enters the nucleus of the cell, which is where our DNA (genetic material) is kept.
  • The cell breaks down and gets rid of the mRNA soon after it is finished using the instructions.

The FDA briefing documents show that it is true that there were four cases of Bell’s Palsy among those who received the vaccine. Bell’s Palsy is a sudden weakness or freezing of muscles on one side of the face, which in most cases is temporary.

The briefing says that the frequency of Bell’s Palsy in the vaccine group is “consistent with the expected background rate in the general population”, adding there is “no clear basis upon which to conclude a causal relationship at this time”. The FDA said it would, however, recommend “surveillance” for cases of Bell’s Palsy as the vaccine is sent out to larger groups of people.

You can read the full FDA briefing here: www.fda.gov/media/144245/download

No one is required to receive any vaccination by the health district or the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare.

It is important to remember that natural and homeopathic remedies are also chemicals, some quite powerful and not subject to regulatory oversight. It is prudent to question the ingredients in any product that enters the body. In the case of vaccines, the ingredients used to carry the active ingredients have gone through extensive testing and have been found to be safe.

The Pfizer vaccine is not recommended for individuals under the age of 16 and the Moderna vaccine is not recommended for individuals under the age of 18.

 

That is not recommended. If you receive the Pfizer vaccine for your first dose, then you need to receive the Pfizer vaccine for your second dose. This is the same for the Moderna vaccine.

Production of the COVID-19 vaccines began sooner than is typical. Normally, production starts after a pharmaceutical company completes the development stage for a vaccine, which includes rigorous testing for safety and effectiveness. Every vaccine goes through a series of reviews and approvals by the FDA and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), among others. In the case of COVID-19 vaccines, the federal government invested taxpayer dollars to encourage pharmaceutical companies to start production before the development stage completed.

The vaccines are still going through the same rigorous testing for safety and effectiveness, review, and approval process. However, because pharmaceutical companies began manufacturing the vaccine during the clinical trials, they were able to make the vaccines available as soon as they were authorized.