What you need to know about COVID-19 vaccine.
By Linda Garner, parish nurse
Have you registered to receive your vaccine yet? Are you eligible to be immunized? What happens when you get the vaccine? There are so many questions, but where do you find the answers?
Vaccines have been made available to 1A-classified persons such as health care workers, first responders and those living in long-term care facilities. At this time, those in classification 1B are also eligible to register and get vaccinated. That includes all who are 65 years and older and those who are 18 and older but have a chronic medical condition such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, COPD and others.
So where does an eligible person register? The first place is with your county health department. If you live in Dallas County, visit www.dallascounty.org/covid-19 and select the link “COVID-19 Vaccine” at the top of the page. Scroll down until you pass the photo of vaccine being given and look for a green ribbon that reads “Click here to register for the COVID Vaccine.” This will take you to the registration page. Once you have registered, you will receive an appointment as they become available. The Dallas County Health Department will indicate the exact location of your appointment, which for now will be Fair Park; however, if other major hubs are established by your scheduled appointment date, that will be indicated.
All shots are given by appointment. You will need a photo ID such as a driver’s license, passport or library card. Expect to stay 15 to 30 minutes for observation post vaccination. At your first appointment, you will be given an appointment for the second dose.
If you live in another county, please visit your county (Tarrant, Denton, Collin) health department’s website and register. You can receive a vaccine in any county but supplies at this point are limited. Each week more vaccine will be shipped and as more is received, those who have registered will be scheduled.
What happens when you get your shot? Many people have reported very few symptoms post vaccination, especially after the first shot. Remember that this is a two-shot series and both are necessary for full protection. Possible side effects may include a low-grade fever, sore arm and/or headache. It is OK to take acetaminophen (Tylenol) for a day or two after getting the vaccine.
Please be sure to continue to wear your mask and practice social distancing even if you have been vaccinated. This will continue to ensure that you and others are protected.
If you have questions or need assistance, contact Parish Nurse Linda Garner at 214-926-1125 or firstname.lastname@example.org