What is the Vaccine Administration Management System (VAMS)?

The Vaccine Administration Management System (VAMS) is a secure online tool to manage vaccine administration from the time the vaccine arrives at a clinic to when it is administered to a person.

For more information on VAMS: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/reporting/vams/faqs.html

VAMS is different from the WV COVID-19 Vaccine Registration System, which enables West Virginians to pre-register for COVID-19 vaccine appointment offerings and notifications.

For more information on the Registration System: https://www.vaccinate.wv.gov

When will I get the vaccine?

As of April 13, 2021, out of an abundance of caution, use of the Johnson & Johnson's Janssen COVID-19 vaccine is temporarily paused in accordance with CDC and FDA recommendation.

After receiving FDA authorization for use in the U.S., Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines began arriving in West Virginia in early-mid December. In February 2021, Johnson & Johnson's Janssen also received FDA authorization and entered the state. Vaccines remain in limited supply nationally. West Virginia is dedicated to ensuring that all West Virginians have access to a COVID-19 vaccination as soon as possible. The guiding principles in decision making for getting COVID-19 vaccines to our higher-risk groups include: protecting our most vulnerable, reducing deaths, reducing hospitalizations, and maintaining our critical services and acute care.

As vaccine availability increases over the coming months, the state will able to reach more and more of the general public to offer COVID-19 vaccines as the national supply can meet demand.

Decisions regarding overlapping phased distribution of limited vaccine supplies will remain flexible to ensure West Virginians are offered access as quickly, efficiently, and equitably as possible. It is not necessary to fully complete vaccination in one phase before beginning the next phase.

To view the state's overlapping phased allocation plan and more details regarding particular age groups and high-risk settings: vaccinate.wv.gov

How is the COVID-19 vaccine administered?

COVID-19 vaccines are given through injections into the muscle, typically of the upper arm (i.e., intramuscular), as either a two-dose series or single dose. Each person receives the recommended dose set forth by the manufacturer.

 

Who will administer the COVID-19 vaccine?

The vaccine will be administered by a health care professional trained in giving an injection into the muscle.

 

How long between the 2-dose vaccines? What happens if I'm late for the second dose?

As of April 13, 2021, out of an abundance of caution, use of the Johnson & Johnson's Janssen COVID-19 vaccine is temporarily paused in accordance with CDC and FDA recommendation.

Pfizer-BioNTech. The Pfizer product requires a 2-dose vaccination series administered three weeks (21 days) apart. Administration of second dose is allowed within a 4-day grace period (meaning days 17-21) or after. If more than 21 days have passed since the first dose, the second dose should be administered at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to restart the series.

 

Moderna. The Moderna vaccine requires a 2-dose vaccination series administered one month (28 days) apart. Administration of second dose is allowed within a 4-day grace period (meaning days 24-28) or after. If more than 28 days have passed since the first dose, the second dose should be administered at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to restart the series.

 

Any individual who is late to receive their second dose will still mount an immune response upon receipt of the second dose. However, in the meantime between first and second doses, the individual will not have maximum protection against COVID-19. Further, the longer one waits after the recommended dosage period (3-4 weeks after the first dose), it is unknown how protected they will be. Thus it is advised for the second dose to be administered as close to the recommended time period as possible.

 

(Note: Johnson & Johnson's Janssen vaccine only requires ONE dose.)

 

For 2-dose vaccines, what happens if I only receive one dose of the vaccine and not both?

It is recommended to receive both doses of the vaccine for maximum protection.

 

Can I get one dose of one mRNA vaccine (e.g., Pfizer) and the second dose of another mRNA vaccine (e.g., Moderna)?

As of April 13, 2021, out of an abundance of caution, use of the Johnson & Johnson's Janssen COVID-19 vaccine is temporarily paused in accordance with CDC and FDA recommendation.

Individuals should receive the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from the same manufacturer as the first dose. The COVID-19 vaccine products are not interchangeable. The safety and efficacy of mixing products in the vaccination series have not been evaluated. However, if two doses of different mRNA COVID-19 vaccine products are inadvertently administered, no additional doses of either product are recommended at this time. In certain rare situations, such as when the first-dose vaccine product cannot be determined, any available mRNA COVID-19 vaccine may be administered at a minimum interval of 28 days between doses to complete the mRNA COVID-19 vaccination series. Again, COVID-19 vaccines are not interchangeable. In extremely rare situations, some people simply may not have documentation or know which vaccine they got for their first dose.

 

Recommendations may be updated as further information becomes available or other vaccine types (e.g., viral vector, protein subunit vaccines) are authorized. As further information becomes available and other vaccine types are authorized, recommendations may be updated.

 

Please note: The Johnson & Johnson's Janssen COVID-19 vaccine should not be used in place of the second dose for any mRNA vaccine. (However, if an individual experiences a contraindication with the first mRNa dose, in rare cases they may re-start vaccination with the single J&J/Janssen dose with guidance from a healthcare provider - see "Contraindications" and "Precautions" question).

Which COVID-19 vaccine should I receive?

All authorized COVID-19 vaccines are lifesaving vaccines. It is recommended to receive the first vaccine an individual is eligible to receive and that is offered in their community. If someone chooses to delay getting a COVID-19 vaccine when offered, that person would be left open to infection for a longer period of time and be at greater risk of serious illness and death.

Research trials have shown all three vaccines are highly effective against severe COVID-19 illness, hospitalization, and death. Each was developed and evaluated at different points in time against different strains of COVID-19 within distinct geographic regions and populations. The CDC offers no preference among the authorized vaccines.

How will second dose appointments be offered?

Those who have received a first dose of a two-dose mRNA COVID-19 vaccine (i.e., Pfizer or Moderna) will be contacted through the location that administered the first dose and/or receive a notification from the West Virginia COVID-19 Vaccine Registration System.

 

Is taking the COVID-19 vaccine mandatory?

The vaccine is not mandatory.