COVID-19 Vaccine

Note: This webpage is updated weekly.                                                                                                                                           Last updated: February 24, 2021

*Inclement weather in the southern half of the United States where vaccine distribution warehouses are located forced the federal government to delay vaccine shipments. Nicollet County did not receive their allotted vaccines for the week of February 16.

Nicollet County Health and Human Services hopes to begin providing vaccine for the 65 and older population in the near future. Currently, our vaccine allocations remain very limited.  Please complete this survey if interested in receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.  Completing the survey indicates that you are interested in the vaccine and ensures that we can contact you for registration purposes when vaccine opportunities are available. 

This survey is only for individuals who live in Nicollet County and are ages 65 and older.  You can provide your interest in vaccination online by completing our COVID-19 Vaccine Survey for Residents Ages 65 and Older or by calling (507) 934-8559 to speak with one our administrative support team members.

HHS Vaccine Data

 COVID-19 Vaccine Q&A

When will a COVID-19 vaccine be available?

The COVID-19 vaccine is being distributed in phases to different groups of people. As vaccine supply increases in the months to come, more people will have the chance to get vaccinated. 

Nicollet County has completed vaccinating phase 1A, early education through grade 12 personnel, and child care workers. We will begin vaccinating individuals who are 65 years and older starting the week of March 1. If you are a Nicollet County resident who is 65 years or older and wish to get vaccinated, please complete this survey or call (507) 934-8559 to speak with one of our administrative support team members. 

Updates will be provided when we are able to start vaccinating more people and we will provide more information at that time for how eligible people can get vaccinated. Nicollet County’s Facebook page and website will be regularly updated. The vaccine distribution speed is based on the amount of vaccine received from the state and the federal government. No vaccine is left unused or wasted.

I’m 65 or older, so why do I still need to wait?

On January 14, 2021, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) announced that hospitals, health care systems, and other vaccination partners can provide COVID-19 vaccines to broader categories of Minnesotans – including Minnesotans 65 years of age and older. Unfortunately, the demand for the vaccine continues to far outweigh the current supply and not all who are currently eligible will be able to get vaccinated until more supply becomes available.

Rest assured, Nicollet County and our health care partners understand the community’s need and desire for the COVID-19 vaccine, and we are working as fast as we can to get as many people immunized as possible based on the prioritization schedule and the vaccine supply at hand.  

How will I hear if I am eligible?

The county will continue to update this website and social media feed regarding the availability of vaccines for Nicollet County residents. We will make sure everyone who is eligible for a vaccine knows how, where, and when they can get their shots. 

Minnesotans can also check the state's vaccination website for the latest information.

How do we know that COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective?

COVID-19 vaccine development requirements are the same as for all other vaccines. Experts from federal agencies, including the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), review the information collected during the vaccine manufacturers’ testing process to determine whether a vaccine is safe and effective.

Experts continue tracking vaccine safety information once vaccines are given in real-life conditions to make sure they are working as expected.

Will the COVID-19 vaccine be required?

No one will be required to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. However, vaccination is highly encouraged because we know that these vaccines are very effective in preventing severe COVID-19 disease. Getting the vaccine will protect your health and help reduce the strain on the health care system.

Are there any side effects from getting the vaccine?

The most common side effects from the COVID-19 vaccines are fatigue, headache, and muscle aches. These side effects are most likely to occur one or two days after getting the vaccine. Although most people will not have significant side effects, some people may wish to schedule their vaccination to allow for a day or two of rest afterward. Side effects from the COVID-19 vaccine are a sign that your immune system is working well.

Can I get vaccinated if I’m pregnant, breastfeeding, and/or immunocompromised?

It is important to know that for some populations -- like people who are pregnant, breastfeeding, and/or immunocompromised — we don’t have much information about the safety or how well the vaccine works, or it hasn’t been studied yet. In these circumstances, people may be vaccinated but should speak with their health care provider so they understand what is known about their situation and vaccination.

Do I have to get two doses of vaccine?

Two doses are needed for the two COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna. The time between the doses depends on the vaccine you are getting. The Pfizer vaccine must be given 21 days (3 weeks) apart and the Moderna vaccine must be given 28 days apart (1 month/4 weeks).

It is very important that someone gets both vaccine doses, the same product for each dose, and that the doses are given at the correct time apart. The vaccine is only fully effective with both doses of the vaccine. If someone only gets one dose, they may not be protected (immune) against COVID-19. It is okay if you get the vaccine within four days of the 21 or 28-day mark (depending on which vaccine you get).

Will I get COVID-19 from the vaccine?

No, there are no live viruses in the COVID-19 vaccines. Therefore, it is impossible to get COVID-19 from the vaccines. However, by getting vaccinated, you can protect yourself from getting a severe case of COVID-19.

How much does a COVID-19 vaccine cost?

The COVID-19 vaccine itself is free. (The federal government has pre-paid for doses for all Americans.) By law, healthcare systems and clinics are allowed to charge vaccine administration fees and/or clinic visit fees. These fees will likely be covered by your insurance. If you receive your vaccine at a community clinic offered by Nicollet County Health and Human Services, your insurance will not be charged for an administration fee. 

Will I still have to wear a mask and physically distance myself from others once I’ve received the COVID-19 vaccine?

Yes, we will all need to continue to wear masks and practice other prevention steps for some time -- even after receiving the vaccine. This is because, at this time, scientists are not yet certain that the vaccines prevent asymptomatic virus spread (i.e., you could get the vaccine but still get infected and spread the virus with mild to no symptoms). When public health experts know more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide, they will update the prevention recommendations.

For now, steps everyone should take to prevent the spread of COVID-19 include physically distancing (6 feet), wearing face masks, staying home when sick, covering your coughs and sneezes, and washing your hands frequently.

Where can I learn more about the COVID-19 vaccines?