FAQ

Getting Vaccinated

Finding an Appointment

How do I get an appointment?

There are many places to schedule an appointment, including Oakland County, the State of Michigan, local pharmacies, hospitals, community clinics, and more. You can visit the Get Vaccinated page to find providers with appointments near you.

Who is administering the vaccine?

Organizations across the state are working hard to vaccinate Michiganders. As a result, there are many places to look when scheduling an appointment, including Oakland County, the State of Michigan, local pharmacies, hospitals, community clinics, and more.

Will I be informed of which vaccine I will receive?

Yes. Wherever you receive your vaccine they will inform you what type it is, provide you information, and schedule your second dose at the appropriate time.

How much does the COVID-19 vaccine cost?

The COVID-19 vaccine is available to all residents for free.

How do I cancel or reschedule my vaccine appointment with Oakland County Health Division?

Please call the Oakland County Health Division Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533.  Indicate if you are canceling/rescheduling your first or second dose appointment.  Nurse on Call is available Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Are there vaccines for children and teens?

Children 12 years and older are able to get the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends everyone 12 years and older should get a COVID-19 vaccination to help protect against COVID-19.

Current safety and efficacy testing of the vaccines for children ages 2 to 11 years may lead to authorization of one or more of the COVID-19 vaccines for younger kids in the months ahead.

Vaccine Incentive

How do I get a $50 gift card?

Oakland County reached their 70% vaccination goal on July 23 and the gift card incentive has ended.

However, If you are an Oakland County resident who received your 1st  COVID-19 vaccine from Oakland County or another provider between June 24 and July 23you are still eligible for a gift card.

All gift card requests must be submitted by August 6, 2021.

Call Nurse on Call at 800-848-5533 for assistance.

Can I still get a gift card if I get vaccinated by another provider?

Oakland County residents can also receive the $50 gift card after receiving dose 1 of the COVID-19 vaccine from another provider between June 24-July 23. All gift card requests must be submitted by August 6, 2021. Click here to get your $50 gift card in the mail. Health Division staff will be verifying proof of vaccination.

Call Nurse on Call at 800-848-5533 for assistance.

Are non-Oakland County residents who work in Oakland County eligible for the incentive? 

No, non-Oakland County residents who work in the county are not eligible for the incentive, but are welcome to any of the Oakland County Health Division vaccination sites to get vaccinated. 

Are there other incentive programs available for non-Oakland County residents?

Michigan has launched Michigan.gov/Vax2Win to share information about local and state organizations and businesses offering giveaways and incentives during COVID-19 vaccine clinics.

Why is only this group receiving the incentive, and not anyone previously vaccinated?

Oakland County had a goal of vaccinating 70 percent of residents 16 and older by July 4 in alignment with state and national vaccination goals. This incentive program was geared to help achieve that goal by motivating anyone especially the 16–29-year population, with lower vaccination rates who may still be reluctant to become vaccinated. We know that vaccination helps slow the spread of COVID-19 virus.  If we are able to get more shots in arms, we will be able to better slow the spread of COVID-19.

Special Accommodations

Can the County transport me to my vaccine appointment?

Oakland County and SMART have teamed up to provide easy access to COVID-19 vaccinations for those who need transportation to and from their scheduled vaccine appointment at an Oakland County Health Division vaccine clinic.

Any resident with transportation needs should call 1-800-848-5533 to schedule their transportation to and from the clinic when they receive their confirmation email for their scheduled vaccine appointment. Health Division staff then contacts SMART to arrange transportation directly with the client.

How is Oakland County accommodating seniors who cannot stand in line?

At each vaccine clinic site there are staff available to assist those who need special accommodations.

Is childcare available?

Free childcare is being offered to parents and caregivers getting a COVID-19 vaccination or recovering from a vaccination until Monday, July 4. Employees or their clients can sign up at www.Vaccines.gov  , text 438829 or call 1-800-232-0233.

After your Appointment

Once you get your first shot, how long should you wait before getting your second shot?

The earliest you can receive your second dose is 21 days for Pfizer and 28 days for Moderna.

Will I have a positive COVID-19 Test after getting the vaccine?

No. Vaccines currently being used 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.

Do I still need to wear a mask even after I receive the COVID-19 vaccine?

No. Fully vaccinated (2 weeks after the second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna, or 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson) people can resume activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.

How do I obtain a new COVID-19 vaccination card if I misplace mine?

If you are an Oakland County resident who has lost your vaccination card, the Oakland County Health Division is able to provide you with your Michigan Care Improvement Registry (MCIR) record, which will have documentation of your COVID-19 vaccine(s).  Requests should be made in person at either the North Oakland Health Center (1200 N Telegraph, Building 34 East, Pontiac, MI 48341) or the South Oakland Health Center (27725 Greenfield Rd, Southfield, MI 48076).  Appointments are not needed, but please bring a photo I.D.

Vaccine Safety

General Safety

Is the COVID-19 Vaccine Safe?

Yes. Millions of people in the United States have received COVID-19 vaccines since they were authorized for emergency use by FDA. These vaccines have undergone and will continue to undergo the most intensive safety monitoring in U.S. history. This monitoring includes using both established and new safety monitoring systems to make sure that COVID-19 vaccines are safe.

Vaccines are traditionally developed from one of several methods: (1) “live-attenuated” virus, made from virus that has been altered to decrease its virulence (harmful, infectious potential); (2) killed virus; (3) purified portions of virus, such as surface proteins.  The mRNA vaccine contains none of those components, only the “message” used for our cells to produce a single protein to stimulate our immune system. These mRNA vaccines are the safest in vaccine history to date.

Learn more about how COVID-19 mRNA vaccines work.

Can the vaccine give me a COVID-19 infection?

No. None of the COVID-19 vaccines currently being used in the United States use the live virus that causes COVID-19. There are several different types of vaccines in development. 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. This means it is possible a person could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or after vaccination and get sick. This is because the vaccine has not had enough time to provide protection.

Will the mRNA vaccine alter my DNA?

No. 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 enters 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.

Is the COVID-19 Vaccine safe for me?

If I am pregnant or breastfeeding, is the COVID-19 vaccine safe?

If you are hoping to become pregnant, or are currently pregnant, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG) strongly recommends that all eligible persons receive a COVID-19 vaccine or vaccine series,  You CAN also continue breastfeeding after being vaccinated.

If I have a pre-existing condition, is the COVID-19 vaccine safe?

People with pre-existing conditions can receive a COVID-19 vaccine as long as they have not had an immediate or severe allergic reaction to a COVID-19 vaccine or to any of the ingredients in the vaccine. Learn more about vaccination considerations for people with underlying medical conditions.

If I am taking prescription medication, is the COVID-19 vaccine safe?

Talk to your healthcare providers for advice. Inform your vaccination provider about all your allergies, health conditions, and medications.

Can the COVID-19 vaccine help me even if I have already been infected with COVID-19?

Yes. 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 had 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 to COVID-19 may not last very long. 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.

Additional Information

How is Oakland County working to achieve vaccine equity?

The Health Division will continue to prioritize vaccination of individuals who live and work in Oakland County based on highest risk including older adults, disability/medical conditions, essential/frontline workers and communities who many have more difficulty accessing vaccine.

Is it safe to travel if I’m not vaccinated yet?

If you are not fully vaccinated and must travel, you should get tested with a viral test 1-3 days before your trip.

Wearing a mask over your nose and mouth is required on planes, buses, trains, and other forms of public transportation traveling into, within, or out of the United States and while indoors at U.S. transportation hubs such as airports and stations. CDC recommends that travelers who are not fully vaccinated continue to wear a mask and maintain physical distance in outdoor areas of a conveyance when traveling.

Avoid crowds and stay at least 6 feet/2 meters (about 2 arm lengths) from anyone who is not traveling with you. Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer (with at least 60% alcohol).

Get tested with a viral test 3-5 days after travel AND stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel. Even if you test negative, stay home and self-quarantine for the full 7 days.