State Health Leaders Answer COVID-19 Vaccine Questions During Virtual Town Hall

Wednesday, January 13th 2021, 5:29 pm

Health experts and leaders answered COVID-19 vaccine questions in an AARP virtual town hall meeting.

Health officials do have a tip if you're still trying to schedule an appointment, continue to check the online portal especially on Wednesday evenings and or Thursday mornings.

Mindy Spohn with the state health department said a lot could change in the administration of the vaccine, even large drive-thru sites could be in the foreseeable future.

"Once we have more vaccine in the state and there's more private providers that have the availability to give it to you, then there will be other access points besides the scheduler,” Spohn said.

Spohn said it's important to be proactive in getting scheduled for the second shot, but reminders are currently in the works.

"We do have some reminder texts that will be coming out," Spohn said.

Spohn said should make sure to sign up for the "second dose" only clinics.

"When the patient says they are going in for their second dose - they can choose Pfizer or Moderna," she said.

Spohn said that way the clinic can make sure they are stocked up with that vaccine.

The COVID-19 vaccine is free, but the online portal is asking for health insurance information, and Spohn said it’s because they can charge an administration fee to insurance companies.

“We are able to charge insurance or Medicare or Medicaid an administration fee,” Spohn said.

Right now, the health department is working on agreements with home health care programs for those who cannot drive to get vaccinated.

Dr. Stephen Prescott with the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation said health experts still don't know if can you can carry the virus after having the vaccine.

“We're hopeful that once you are immunized that you can no longer be a carrier, but that won't be known until we have a lot of people vaccine,” Prescott said.

Health care leaders said it's still important to wear a mask, wash your hands, and watch your distance.