Starting today, the availability for everyone over the age of 16 is open, allowing nearly everyone eligibility to get the vaccine. But with increasing demand, it is advised to secure an appointment before heading to the pharmacy.
Here are some tips to getting vaccinated:
- It is recommended to book an appointment. With supply levels fluctuating, it's a good idea to secure a time and date with a pharmacy to get the shot. Walk-ins are hard to come by especially now with the expanded eligibility.
- Every Californian can sign up through the MyTurn website or by calling (833) 422-4255 to check eligibility if you are wanting to get an appointment.
- The California Department of Public Health has list of where you can make an appointment. Check local pharmacies as well as Walgreens and CVS for appointments. Your local pharmacy might have other platforms to getting on the list of appointments, so check locally for their availability.
- Social media can also be a good resource. Facebook has launched a new tool to help find vaccines and appointments. There are dedicated Facebook groups and pages for those looking for extra doses. Word of mouth can also work to see where other people have has luck getting in for an appointment or going to certain locations for extra doses. Some urgent care locations are also able to vaccinate, so be sure to check those local locations.
- The US Center for Disease Control has also launched a website vaccine tracking tool to get an appointment.
- Are you up for traveling? More rural locations might have more availability for appointments. Check with the outlying zip codes around your area to see if it's quicker to drive a bit for an appointment. Locally, if you having trouble finding doses near you, opt for an appointment out of the area.
- Worried about missing work for the appointment? A new California sick leave program allows for all workers in the state an extra 80 of Covid-19 related sick time. That includes time off for getting the vaccine or feeling unwell after the shots. Read up here on your rights for using that sick time. Remember, it takes two weeks from your last shot for your body to be fully immune from the virus.
- Keep your vaccination card safe and bring it with you to your second appointment. Places like Staples and Office Depot will laminate your vaccine card for free once it's completed. It's important to keep that card in your files even after the second dose because there is no data base right now tracking who is vaccinated. If vaccine passports are in the future for some companies or travel, be sure to know where that card is for future reference.