COVID-19 vaccines

Frequently asked questions

When and where can I get my vaccine?

COVID-19 vaccines are available throughout the United States. You can search a national vaccine site map to find a site near you.

Is the vaccine covered at no cost to our members?

Yes. The federal government is covering the cost of the vaccine, and payers (health plans and self-funded groups) must cover the cost of administering the vaccines. That means Capital Blue Cross’ medical and prescription drug benefits will cover those services with no member cost share during the public health emergency.

Should I get a COVID-19 vaccine?

A COVID-19 vaccination will help keep you from getting seriously ill with COVID-19, and will likely protect you from getting sick at all. It may also protect people around you. If you have concerns about your unique health situation, talk to you doctor about the best choice for you.

Vaccines prepare your immune system to fight the virus if you are exposed. All three vaccines—Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson—have been proven to be highly effective at preventing illness.

Learn more about the benefits of getting a COVID-19 vaccination from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Will the vaccine be mandatory?

The Pennsylvania Department of Health stated that it does not have any plans to make the vaccine mandatory.

What should I expect when I go to my vaccine appointment?

When you visit the vaccine provider site, you should expect that you will need to wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth and stay at least six feet away from others while waiting in any lines. The vaccine provider will also wear a mask.

You should expect to receive a fact sheet that tells you about the specific vaccine you are being offered. After you receive your vaccination, you should receive a vaccination card or printout that tells you which COVID-19 vaccine you received, the date you received it, and where you received it. If you need a second dose, it’s likely you will set up the date and time for that appointment before you leave the first.

You can expect to wait up to 20 minutes after your shot to be monitored for any immediate, serious side effects, which are rare.

What should I expect after I receive the vaccine?

Some people may experience minor side effects, such as soreness at the injection site, fatigue, or headache. Talk with your healthcare provider if you are concerned about your side effects or to ask about ways to treat them.

With most COVID-19 vaccines, you will need a second shot to get the full protective benefit. Talk to your vaccine provider about how and when to schedule the second appointment. Be sure to get the second shot even if you have side effects after the first one, unless a vaccination provider or your doctor tells you not to get a second shot.

It takes time for your body to build protection after any vaccination. COVID-19 vaccines that require two shots may not give you the vaccine’s full protective benefit until two weeks or so after your second shot.

Consider downloading v-safe, a free, smartphone-based tool from the CDC that uses text messaging and web surveys to provide personalized health check-ins after you receive a COVID-19 vaccination. V-safe also reminds you to get your second dose if you need one.

I’ve been hearing scary information about COVID-19 vaccines. Is it true?

Unfortunately, there have been myths about the vaccines spread through social media and other untrustworthy sources. To get accurate facts, visit the CDC’s website, which provides detailed and up-to-date information on the COVID-19 vaccines and the pandemic.