COVID-19 Vaccination FAQs
Update: COVID-19 Vaccine is currently available at select Pharmacies: Check Vaccine Availability Here.
When will your Pharmacies have the vaccine?
As of July 2021, all Save Mart and Lucky pharmacies have the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. Supplies of Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccines vary by location.
Who is eligible to get the vaccine and when can I get it?
Everyone 12 years of age and older is eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine, but not all vaccines have been authorized for use in children. If you would like to get the vaccine for your child, please speak to your Save Mart or Lucky pharmacist.
When can I get the vaccine?
Our pharmacies now accept walk ins for COVID vaccines during normal business hours, but you can reduce your wait by scheduling your vaccine here.
Is the vaccine safe?
Clinical trials with tens of thousands of participants have been conducted on the COVID-19 vaccine(s) in accordance with rigorous standards set by the FDA. The FDA has reviewed the scientific data generated by these trials and determined that these vaccines are safe and effective. Additional monitoring systems are also in place to ensure the COVID-19 vaccines are as safe as possible including V-safe, which is a smartphone-based, after-vaccination health checker for people who receive COVID-19 vaccines.
How many shots are required?
The Moderna and Pfizer immunizations work as a series of two injections administered several weeks apart. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is authorized for use as a single dose.
Will I be immune once I receive the vaccine?
All three vaccines provide significant protection from COVID-19, especially from death or serious illness due to the virus. Your vaccine is considered to be most effective from two weeks after the final dose. We won’t know how long that protection lasts until more data becomes available.
Are there any side effects?
Yes. Like with many vaccines, you may experience some side effects after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. These are normal signs that your body is building protection. The most common side effects are:
- Redness or tenderness where you received the shot
- Mild fever
Side effects should go away within a few days. If side effects are persistent or do not go away, contact your healthcare provider.
COVID-19 vaccines are still being studied in clinical trials, and serious and unexpected effect may occur. A rare but serious type of blood clot has occurred in some patients who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Most people who developed these blood clots were women 18 to 49. Detecting this rare side effect tells us that the systems in place to monitor the safety of these vaccines are working. You can learn more about how vaccine safety systems work here.
Will getting the vaccine actually give me COVID?
No. The vaccine will not transmit the COVID-19 virus and won’t cause you to test positive on most COVID tests.
What are the age guidelines for the vaccine?
It varies based on the vaccine. As of July 2021, everyone 12 years of age and older is eligible for the Pfizer vaccine. The Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are only authorized for use in adults, but . authorization to give the Moderna vaccine to children is pending. Vaccines are expected to receive authorization for younger children with time.
Is there anyone who shouldn’t get the vaccine?
Yes. You should not get the vaccine if you have a history of severe allergies or anaphylaxis from any component of the COVID-19 vaccine. If you have had a severe allergic reaction to other vaccines, or are pregnant or nursing, it is recommended that you work with your health care provider to decide if it is safe for you to be vaccinated.
If I’ve already had the virus, do I need to get vaccinated?
Yes. Experts don’t know how long you are protected from reinfection after recovering from COVID-19, and studies have shown that vaccination provides a strong boost in protection in people who have recovered from COVID-19.
Do you accept all insurance plans?
Our Pharmacies accept most insurance plans, including Medicare and Medi-Cal.
How much does the vaccine cost?
If you have insurance, your insurance company will be billed for administration of the vaccine. However, there is currently no copay or cost to you for getting the COVID-19 vaccine in our Pharmacies, whether you have insurance or not.
Can I stop wearing a mask after I’m vaccinated?
The CDC says that fully vaccinated people can resume most activities they did prior to the pandemic two weeks after their final recommended vaccine dose. That’s the first dose of J&J or the second dose of Moderna or Pfizer. However, masks and social distancing may still be required by local businesses, by specific rules and regulations, or your workplace.
Is getting this vaccine similar to getting a flu shot? Will I need to get it every year?
We don’t know yet how COVID-19 vaccines will be administered in future years. It’s possible the virus could change enough to require a new vaccine or that protection could wane over time.
What safety measures are your Pharmacies taking?
Our Pharmacies are following CDC guidelines as well as local and state safety regulations, including rigorous sanitation protocols. Safety measures include one-on-one interactions, post-vaccination sanitation, and social distancing in waiting areas.
How are your Pharmacies maintaining cold temperature standards for the vaccines?
Our Pharmacies have storage facilities that meet or exceed vaccine manufacturer requirements. Vaccine storage temperature is confirmed and maintained through state-of-the-art Digital Data Loggers, a system that immediately alerts the Pharmacy Team of any temperature fluctuations and records and tracks all historical temperature data for auditing.