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New Hampshire COVID-19 vaccine information

Published: 1/28/2021 9:44:38 AM

Updated Tuesday, Jun. 29 2021

 

Do I need to wear a mask? 

A month and a half ago, the CDC new guidance that no longer required vaccinated Americans to wear masks in most circumstances. However, as new, more contagious COVID-19 variants spread, several officials have walked back these leniencies. In late June, the World Health Organization officials urged everyone, vaccinated and unvaccinated alike, to donn masks to protect them from the delta variant. L.A. County health officials similarly asked people to wear masks indoors. 

New Hampshire health officials have not made any new mask recommendations, since the state-wide mask mandate lapsed seve

 

 

How do I sign up?

Qualifying individuals should register to be vaccinated at one of the state’s fixed-site clinics by visiting vaccines.nh.gov or by calling 2-1-1. On this website, you will be guided through a number of screening questions to confirm you are able to safely receive the vaccine.

After you complete the questions, you should receive an email containing a link (which expires after 24 hours) to create your account on the state registration website, VINI. If you do not receive this email, make sure to check your spam folder. Once registered on the website, select the “Create/Manage Appointment” icon and follow instructions to schedule an appointment time. 

A step by step instructional video of how to use the registration portal can be found here

Walgreens has also partnered with the state to expedite the vaccination process. You may receive a call from the pharmacy chain to schedule an appointment. 

What do I bring to the appointment? 

If you qualify for the vaccine because of your age, you should bring proof of your age (ex. a driver’s license, birth certificate). You should also bring proof that you are a resident of New Hampshire. If you don’t have a N.H driver’s license, you can bring a utility bill with your name on it.

How will I know when to get my second dose? 

The Moderna and Pfizer vaccine both require a second shot about a month after the first. At your appointment, you will receive a card that lists your second-dose location and appointment time . You will still be able to reschedule your appointment if you would like a different time by logging into the appointment registration site. 

Those who receive the Johnson & Johnson vaccine do not need a second appointment, as this vaccine requires only one shot. 

How much does the COVID-19 vaccine cost? 

For most people the vaccine is free. Some insurance companies may charge an administrative fee, but that is rare.

Will annual COVID-19 vaccines be needed? 

Maybe. Experts have suggested that boosters may be needed in the fall to protect Americans from variants of concern. Many details of this plan still need to be ironed out, like when these shots should be administered and whether the vaccines need to be adjusted to handle variants or if they should be left the same. 

Have the vaccines been approved? 

Sort of. Three vaccine — from Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson — have been granted Emergency Use Authorization in the United States. This classification allows a drug to be made available to the public, even if the evidence typically required for full approval isn’t available. EUAs are granted during an emergency when there is a strong public need for a certain medication, like Tamiflu, during the H1N1 pandemic.

The vaccines are still rigorously tested for efficacy and safety. Each vaccine must go through multiple stages of clinical trials with thousands of participants. In order for the Food and Drug Administration to grant a vaccine EUA, scientists must show the benefits of the drug outweigh any risks — participants in trials are closely followed for several weeks after their vaccination to track any adverse reactions. 

Will the vaccines be required? 

Employers could make the COVID-19 vaccine mandatory. 

In the same way the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission allows companies to mandate the flu vaccine, companies will likely be able to require employees to take the COVID-19 vaccine. There are some notable exceptions — those with certain medical conditions and religious beliefs may be granted an exception. 

How effective are the vaccines? 

Both Pfizer and Moderna have presented data that show their vaccine is about 95% effective. 

Researchers recruited tens of thousands of participants and divided them into two groups — those who received the vaccine and those who received a placebo. Participants are sent into the world and when some contract the virus, researchers record which group they came from. 

The efficacy is the difference in infection between the two groups. If 50 participants in the vaccine group became infected and 50 participants in the placebo group became infected, the vaccine’s efficacy would be 0%. Conversely, if no one in the vaccine group tested positive, the efficacy would be 100%. 

 




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