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COVID-19 Vaccine Information

In addition to the NYS mass vaccination sites, some pharmacies, hospitals and county health departments are providing vaccination. Visit SouthernTierVax.org to find vaccination sites in the Southern Tier.

We are doing everything we can to responsibly vaccinate as many people as possible, while following specific NYS guidelines. The health and safety of our patients, community and healthcare teams are our top priority.

In the meantime, it’s important for all of us to stay vigilant and continue to wear masks, social-distance and wash our hands frequently as the pandemic continues.

UHS Vaccination Scheduling

You must schedule an appointment for your vaccination. Walk-ins will not be accepted.

How to make an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine:

  • Schedule an appointment at our Vestal location (drive thru) 
  • Schedule an appointment at our Apalachin location
  • Call our COVID-19 Vaccine Center at 607-240-2892 to schedule
    *Please note that we expect a large volume of calls which may result in long wait times.
  • Patients with a UHS Primary Care provider can call their provider office to schedule at either Vestal or Apalachin location.

After scheduling your appointment, please complete and print the NYS COVID-19 Vaccine Form.

UHS Apalachin Vaccination Site

(Google Map)

*Use the link below to schedule your appointment

UHS Apalachin

UHS Vestal Vaccination Site

(Google Map)

*Use either of these links to schedule your appointment:

UHS Vestal

UHS Chenango Memorial Hospital Vaccination Site
UHS Delaware Valley Hospital Vaccination Site

(Google Map)

*Use the link below to schedule your appointment:

UHS Delaware Valley Hospital

NYS COVID-19 Vaccine Scheduling

New York State Tiered Distribution of the COVID-19 Vaccine

Click here for the details of Phase One.

There is currently a limited supply of the COVID-19 vaccine, so it will take time to vaccinate everyone who wants to receive it. The CDC has established a framework to make the vaccine available in a phased approach. Exact time frames have not been determined.

Stay informed by visiting this page or the NYS COVID-19 website.

Eligible New Yorkers are: 

  • Age 16 and older
  • Reside in New York State
  • Work in New York State
  • Study in New York State
Pfizer (Fact Sheet)
Age 16+ Eligible
Moderna (Fact Sheet)
Age 18+ Eligible 
Johnson & Johnson (Fact Sheet)
Age 18+ Eligible

Schedule Your Vaccination Appointment Now!

 1-833-NYS-4VAX 

*Due to significant call volume, assume there will be time spent on hold.

If you have completed the "Am I Eligible" questionnaire above, or if you are in the current priority audiences established by New York State, please schedule your appointment by calling the NYS phone number above or by using the Vaccination Site links above.  Please note, no walk-in appointments are available.   If the current supply of vaccine has been used, you will receive a response of "Event Full".   We are getting vaccine shipments on a regular basis, so check back daily to see if more appointments have been made available.  You will receive a confirmation of your appointment.

Vaccination Process - Frequently Asked Questions

How much will it cost to get vaccinated against COVID-19?

There is no charge for vaccine.

While there is no charge for the vaccine, there will be a bill sent to your insurance company for the administration. There is no copay and no deductible. If you do not have insurance, you will not be charged.

How is the vaccine given?

The vaccine is given as an injection in the arm. Both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require a second dose to increase their effectiveness. The Pfizer vaccine second dose should be 21 days after the first shot, and the Moderna vaccine’s second shot should be taken 28 days after the first. Remember to bring your card when you return

The Janssen vaccine only requires one dose.

What happens if I don’t get the second shot on time?

The schedule for doses of each vaccine is based on data from clinical trials. Everyone who receives a first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine should get the second dose according to schedule in order to provide the best possible protection against the disease.

There have not been enough studies to know if a delayed second shot will still reach the full effectiveness or each vaccine. When each vaccine is taken on their recommended schedule, they are extremely effective in preventing COVID-19.

What do I need to bring to the vaccination site?

After you have scheduled your appointment please bring the following documents with you to your appointment:

  • Government issued photo ID
  • Insurance card (Insurance is being billed, there is no co-pay and no charge if you do not have medical insurance)
  • Verification of your eligibility to be vaccinated in the current phase
    • Work ID badge with title (MD, RN, PA, NP, PT, etc.)
    • Letter from your employer identifying your eligibility
    • Paystub

As we move into other phases of vaccination this information will continue to be be updated.

What should I do to keep myself safe while waiting to get vaccinated and after I get vaccinated?

Continue to cover your mouth and nose with a mask when around others, stay 6 feet away from others who are not in your household, avoid crowds, and wash your hands often. All of these precautions must continue as you wait for the second dose and as we wait for a majority of the population to be vaccinated. Everyone must continue to use all the tools available to us to stop this pandemic as experts continue to learn more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide us.

How often will I need to get COVID-19 vaccination?

The duration of protection from the vaccine against COVID-19 is unknown. Additional assessments of the vaccine are needed to know how often vaccination must be repeated to provide protection.

Phased Distribution: Guiding Principles

NYS Phased Distribution of the Vaccine

New York State will distribute the COVID-19 vaccine in phases based on need and risk.

New Yorkers who are more likely to be exposed to the virus, and who are more likely to become seriously ill if they get COVID-19, will be offered the vaccine first. Both the federal government and New York State have developed plans to ensure that everyone will be able to get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as large quantities are available, at no cost no matter where they live.

Thousands of health care providers will be able to offer vaccination, including doctors’ offices, retail pharmacies, hospitals, and federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) of priority groups. The State Department of Health will share additional information on where New Yorkers can get vaccinated as more vaccine doses become available.

New York State based its COVID-19 vaccine distribution and administration process on ten guiding principles.

  1. Safety: New York State will only endorse and distribute a COVID-19 vaccine if it is determined to be safe and will only be used according to the indication under which it received its authorization or license. This includes continued monitoring and reporting of adverse events after the vaccine is licensed and administered.
  2. Effectiveness: New York State will only endorse and distribute a COVID-19 vaccine if it is demonstrated to be appropriately effective in the populations intended for use.
  3. Expert approved: New York State will rely on the advice and counsel of recognized clinical experts and scientists to review and approve the safety and effectiveness of every vaccine that is authorized by the federal government for distribution.
  4. Equitable & clinically driven distribution: New York State’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan will be based on standards that prioritize people at higher risk of exposure, illness and/or poor outcome. Unrelated factors, such as wealth or status, will not influence distribution.
  5. Transparency: Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, the state’s daily public presentation of facts and reliance on science and medical expertise helped build public trust and confidence in government action. New York State will continue to be transparent regarding all aspects of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution, administration, and monitoring process to ensure New Yorkers are fully informed.
  6. Use of Data: Coordination of a successful vaccination program will require robust tracking, data and analytics capabilities. New York State will use powerful data and information technology platforms to guide all parts of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution and administration process to maximize safety, accuracy, and efficiency and meet all federal reporting requirements — all while maintaining patient privacy.
  7. Privacy and Patient Safety: New York State will ensure all vaccination processes prioritize patient safety, and all information systems guarantee patient privacy. Vaccination does not take away the importance of other public health measures that have served us well in the fight against COVID-19. New Yorkers will be urged to continue to practice social distancing, mask wearing, hand washing, and other measures.
  8. Partnership, Coordination & Public Outreach: New York State recognizes that coordination with local organizations and community providers is essential to the safe and successful distribution and administration of COVID-19 vaccines. The state’s outreach efforts will especially focus on reaching underserved, hard to reach, and vaccine-hesitant populations, as well as those at highest risk for COVID-19 infection and poor outcomes.
  9. State Leadership: New York State expects federal engagement on vaccine vetting, distribution, administration, and funding. However, regardless of the level of federal engagement, New York State will take all necessary steps and require local coordination with the state’s centralized approach to ensure an efficient and organized vaccine distribution.
  10. NEW YORK TOUGH: Throughout this COVID-19 crisis, New Yorkers have shown that there is nothing we cannot do if we work together as one community. Our approach to the COVID-19 vaccine will be tough, strong, united, disciplined, and loving.
Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program

New York has opted into the federal government's​ Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program for COVID-19 vaccination. Under the federal program, employees of CVS, Walgreens and other select pharmacies will vaccinate residents and staff in long-term care facilities including nursing homes, much like they do for the flu vaccine.

With the first deliveries of the Pfizer vaccine already here, the federal program is slated to begin on December 21. New York is dedicating a portion of its initial allotment of 170,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine to this program. Portions of future state allocations will also be used to help complete the program and ensure all residents and staff at long-term care facilities are vaccinated.

NYS Citizen Public Health Training Program

To continue to empower New Yorkers, the state is launching a new Citizen Public Health Training where you will learn from top experts from Cornell on preventing and responding to public health emergencies.

Click here to learn more.

Benefits of Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine

Vaccination will help keep you from getting COVID-19

  • COVID-19 vaccines are carefully evaluated in clinical trials and are authorized or approved only if they make it substantially less likely you’ll get COVID-19.
  • Based on what we know about vaccines for other diseases, experts believe that getting a COVID-19 vaccine may help keep you from getting seriously ill even if you do get COVID-19.
  • Getting vaccinated yourself may also protect people around you, particularly people at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
  • Experts continue to conduct more studies about the effect of COVID-19 vaccination on severity of illness from COVID-19, as well as its ability to keep people from spreading the virus that causes COVID-19.

COVID-19 vaccination will be a safer way to help build protection

  • COVID-19 can have serious, life-threatening complications, and there is no way to know how COVID-19 will affect you. And if you get sick, you could spread the disease to friends, family, and others around you.
  • Clinical trials of COVID-19 vaccines had to show they are safe and effective before any vaccine could be authorized or approved for use. The known and potential benefits of a COVID-19 vaccine had to outweigh the known and potential risks of the vaccine for use under what is known as an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). Watch a video on what an EUA is.
  • Getting COVID-19 may offer some natural protection, known as immunity. But experts don’t know how long this protection lasts, and the risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19 far outweighs any benefits of natural immunity. COVID-19 vaccination will help protect you by creating an antibody response without having to experience sickness.
  • Both natural immunity and immunity produced by a vaccine are important aspects of COVID-19 that experts are trying to learn more about, and CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.

COVID-19 vaccination will be an important tool to help stop the pandemic

  • Wearing masks and social distancing help reduce your chance of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others, but these measures are not enough. Vaccines will work with your immune system so it will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed.
  • The combination of getting vaccinated and following CDC’s recommendations to protect yourself and others will offer the best protection from COVID-19.
  • Stopping a pandemic requires using all the tools we have available. As experts learn more about how COVID-19 vaccination may help reduce spread of the disease in communities, CDC will continue to update the recommendations to protect communities using the latest science.

*CDC Information

Facts about COVID-19 Vaccines

See the PfizerModerna ands Janssen vaccine fact sheets.


 

FACT: COVID-19 vaccines will not give you COVID-19

None of the COVID-19 vaccines currently in development in the United States use the live virus that causes COVID-19. There are several different types of vaccines in development. However, the goal for each of them is to teach our immune systems how to recognize and fight the virus that causes COVID-19. Sometimes this process can cause symptoms, such as fever. These symptoms are normal and are a sign that the body is building immunity. Learn more about how COVID-19 vaccines work.

It typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity after vaccination. That means it’s possible a person could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after vaccination and get sick. This is because the vaccine has not had enough time to provide protection.

FACT: COVID-19 vaccines will not cause you to test positive on COVID-19 viral tests

Vaccines approved for use in the United States won’t cause you to test positive on viral tests, which are used to see if you have a current infection.

If your body develops an immune response, which is the goal of vaccination, there is a possibility you may test positive on some antibody tests. Antibody tests indicate you had a previous infection and that you may have some level of protection against the virus. Experts are currently looking at how COVID-19 vaccination may affect antibody testing results.

FACT: People who have gotten sick with COVID-19 may still benefit from getting vaccinated

Due to the severe health risks associated with COVID-19 and the fact that re-infection with COVID-19 is possible, people may be advised to get a COVID-19 vaccine even if they have been sick with COVID-19 before.

At this time, experts do not know how long someone is protected from getting sick again after recovering from COVID-19. The immunity someone gains from having an infection, called natural immunity, varies from person to person. Some early evidence suggests natural immunity may not last very long.

We won’t know how long immunity produced by vaccination lasts until we have a vaccine and more data on how well it works.

Both natural immunity and vaccine-induced immunity are important aspects of COVID-19 that experts are trying to learn more about, and CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.

FACT: Getting vaccinated can help prevent getting sick with COVID-19

While many people with COVID-19 have only a mild illness, others may get a severe illness or they may even die. There is no way to know how COVID-19 will affect you, even if you are not at increased risk of severe complications. If you get sick, you also may spread the disease to friends, family, and others around you while you are sick. COVID-19 vaccination helps protect you by creating an antibody response without having to experience sickness. Learn more about how COVID-19 vaccines work.

FACT: Receiving an mRNA vaccine will not alter your DNA

mRNA stands for messenger ribonucleic acid and can most easily be described as instructions for how to make a protein or even just a piece of a protein. mRNA is not able to alter or modify a person’s genetic makeup (DNA). The mRNA from a COVID-19 vaccine never enter the nucleus of the cell, which is where our DNA are kept. This means the mRNA does not affect or interact with our DNA in any way. Instead, COVID-19 vaccines that use mRNA work with the body’s natural defenses to safely develop protection (immunity) to disease. Learn more about how COVID-19 mRNA vaccines work. ​

*CDC Information

VIDEO: How Vaccines are Developed

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: COVID-19 vaccines are within sight in the United States! Scientists continue making progress in testing and monitoring COVID-19 vaccines for safety and effectiveness, and the federal government is ensuring that all adults who want a vaccine will be able to get one at no cost. Learn how these and other vaccines are developed, tested, and authorized for use – and how they work to prevent diseases like COVID-19. This video uses interviews and visuals to help viewers understand the science behind vaccines and why there is reason for optimism. For more information, visit http://www.coronavirus.gov.