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COVID-19

Vaccine update

This page is updated as new information becomes available.

Timeline for booster doses

At this time, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved COVID-19 booster shots. Vancouver Clinic is poised to begin offering booster shots once there is federal authorization. Should booster doses be authorized, Vancouver Clinic will send scheduling invitations to eligible individuals through MyChart.

Additional dose for immunocompromised individuals

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended a third dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine for people who are immunocompromised. Vancouver Clinic sent our immunocompromised patients MyChart invitations to schedule their third dose. Immunocompromised individuals needing a third dose may also contact their primary care provider, connect with a local pharmacy, or visit vaccines.gov for more options.

First and second dose availability

Vancouver Clinic is currently offering the Pfizer vaccine to patients age 12 and older who are beginning their COVID-19 vaccine series. For Moderna or Johnson & Johnson availability, please check Vaccinate WA. For information on additional ways to access the vaccine and vaccine safety, please visit the Clark County Public Health website.

COVID-19 first and second dose vaccination is available through your primary care provider in Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, and OB/GYN & Women’s Health. Make an appointment with your provider through MyChart or call 360-882-2778.

Individuals who just need the vaccine but who don’t need to see their provider will be scheduled for a nurse visit. Patients who usually see their provider at our Washougal, Camas, Evergreen Place, Vancouver Plaza, or Ridgefield clinics will be scheduled for a nurse visit at Salmon Creek or 87th Avenue.

If you do not have a primary care provider at Vancouver Clinic, call 360-882-2778 to get established and receive the shot.

For those patients with health insurance, Vancouver Clinic will bill vaccine administration to your insurance company. If your insurance does not pay, or you do not have insurance, you will NOT be responsible for any cost associated with the vaccine.

This webpage remains the best source of accurate information for our patients. Please continue to check back for updates.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is considered immunocompromised?

A medical condition or immunosuppressive medications or treatments can classify a patient as immunocompromised. Conditions and treatments include but are not limited to:

  • Active treatment for solid tumor and hematologic malignancies
  • Receipt of solid-organ transplant and taking immunosuppressive therapy
  • Receipt of CAR-T-cell or hematopoietic stem cell transplant (within two years of transplantation or taking immunosuppression therapy)
  • Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (e.g., DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
  • Advanced or untreated HIV infection
  • Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids (i.e., ≥20mg prednisone or equivalent per day), alkylating agents, antimetabolites, transplant-related immunosuppressive drugs, cancer chemotherapeutic agents classified as severely immunosuppressive, tumor-necrosis (TNF) blockers, and other biologic agents that are immunosuppressive or immunomodulatory.

Talk to your doctor if you have concerns or questions about the health of your immune system.

Do teenagers need a parent or guardian’s consent to receive the vaccine?

Yes, anyone under the age of 18 must have a parent or legal guardian present to provide consent. The parent or legal guardian must remain at the clinic while the shot is being administered. Please note that at this time patients under 18 can only schedule at either the Salmon Creek or 87th Avenue location for the Pfizer vaccine.

Do I have to wait and be observed after the shot?

Yes, the CDC recommends that all individuals who receive the vaccine be observed for 15–30 minutes afterward. The exact time depends on your health history. When you sign the consent to receive the vaccine, you also agree to the waiting period. While reactions are extremely rare, it’s important that a medical professional verify that your body is handling the shot well. Staying for the waiting period also enables us to log your shot in your medical record and schedule a second dose. Please note that the waiting period is required after both doses.

Should I eat before getting the vaccine?

It’s particularly important for individuals who are diabetic to eat normally and monitor their blood sugar. Receiving any shot while blood sugars are out of bounds increases the risk of complications. To help ensure a smooth experience, patients who are not diabetic should also make time for healthy meals and snacks.

Can I pick which vaccine I prefer?

We provide the first dose of whichever one we are able to source at the appointment time. All of the approved vaccines being used in the United States are highly effective in preventing severe disease and hospitalization related to COVID-19. During primary care visits, the vaccine brand offered will vary based on availability, the site, and the age of the patient.

Is the Johnson & Johnson vaccine safe?

The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) paused the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine from April 13 to April 23, 2021, to investigate extremely rare blood clots (called thrombosis) in individuals who received the vaccine. After reviewing the data, it was determined that the protective benefits of the vaccine outweigh any potential risk.

Learn More: Why Washington state paused the J&J vaccine (PDF)

Do I need to worry about myocarditis?

On June 25, 2021, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration added a warning to the Pfizer and Moderna patient fact sheets. These COVID-19 vaccines carry a very low risk of myocarditis and pericarditis, which cause inflammation of the heart or the tissue surrounding the heart. Cases usually occur in patients under 30 following the second dose. The CDC continues to recommend full COVID-19 vaccination as the benefits outweigh the risk of COVID-19 infection and its complications (hospitalization, severe illness, long-term health problems, and death). According to the CDC, “most patients with myocarditis and pericarditis who received care responded well to treatment and rest and quickly felt better.”

If I don’t have health insurance do I have to pay for the vaccine?

For those with health insurance, Vancouver Clinic will bill vaccine administration to your insurance company. If your insurance does not pay, or you do not have insurance, you will NOT be responsible for any cost associated with the vaccine.

After I get my first shot, if a second shot is needed how do I schedule that appointment?

If you receive a vaccine that requires a second dose, you will be scheduled for your second dose when your first dose is administered.

How can I get a new COVID-19 vaccination card if mine is lost?

Washington state allows you to safely access your official vaccination record online through the MyIR website or MyIR mobile app. Once registered, you can access proof of COVID-19 vaccination, as well as childhood immunization information, for you and your children. Alternately, you may request a printed version of your immunization record from your provider’s office.

Testing information

COVID-19 testing is performed at all Vancouver Clinic locations. Results are available within 24-48 hours. Vancouver Clinic uses a PCR method for testing. This is considered the gold standard for accurate diagnostics.

Please note that tests for COVID-19 are currently ordered at the discretion of a health care provider. An order can be placed by your primary care provider (PCP) or though Urgent Care during business hours. Urgent Care is available to see you seven days per week from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekdays and 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends.

You can schedule a visit with your PCP or Urgent Care through MyChart, or walk in at any of our Urgent Care locations. For scheduling assistance, please call (360) 882-2778.

Travel screening requirements can vary by state and country. We suggest checking with your airline or final destination to see if Vancouver Clinic testing will meet your needs. Travelers to Hawaii should make other testing plans.

Many insurance companies are waiving the co-payment for COVID-19 testing. The COVID-19 test will bill to insurance at $139, plus a collection fee or office visit charge. Based on symptoms, in addition to COVID-19 testing, additional tests or services may also be ordered by the provider seeing you. You should contact your insurer to confirm the test will meet coverage criteria before scheduling a test.

Visitor & Mask Policy

Visitors

For the safety of patients, visitors, and staff, Vancouver Clinic asks that you bring only one support person with you to your appointment and only if it is necessary.

A support person must be in good health (no fever, sneezing, coughing, or runny nose), and be at least 16 years or older.

Infants under 6 months of age are permitted two adult support people.

Masks

Vancouver Clinic requires masks regardless of COVID-19 immunization status. This rule is consistent with CDC, state, and local guidelines for health care settings.

We will provide a medical grade mask when you enter the clinic. This is for your safety and the health of our care team, other patients, and our community. If you are unable to wear a mask due to medical reasons, a video visit should be considered as an alternative. Patients who receive a provider mask exemption will be asked to wear a face shield and scheduled as the last patient of the day if a video visit is not an option. Anyone who needs lab or imaging services and who is unable to wear a mask will need to wear a face shield and come near clinic closing

Overview

Information about COVID-19

People with COVID-19 experience a wide range of symptoms and may be mildly sick to severely ill.

Symptoms may appear 2–14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms or combinations of symptoms may have COVID-19:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

This list does not include all possible symptoms. COVID-19 testing is available through a provider order at Vancouver Clinic.

How to protect yourself

  • Get vaccinated against COVID-19.
  • Follow public health guidelines.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • When soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes. Use a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.
  • Stay home and away from others when sick.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

If you feel sick

  • Stay home when you are sick, especially if you have respiratory illness symptoms. Whether you have the seasonal flu, the common cold, or something else, it’s important you stay away from others when sick.
  • Monitor yourself for fever, coughing, and shortness of breath. For mild-to-moderate symptoms, use home monitoring and care. Antiviral medications are prescribed to hospitalized patients only, and antibiotics are not useful for treating viral infections.
  • If you need to seek care, schedule a visit with your primary care provider or Urgent Care through MyChart. For scheduling assistance or to speak with an advice nurse, please call (360) 882-2778.
  • If you are experiencing life-threatening symptoms, call 911 or go to the nearest hospital emergency room.
Resources

The CDC has the most current information about the virus, including everything you need to know about how the virus spreads, how it’s treated, how to protect yourself, and what to do if you get sick. Stay on top of the latest by visiting the CDC website, which is updated frequently.

Washington State Department of Health:
https://www.doh.wa.gov/Emergencies/Coronavirus

Center for Disease Control:
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
What to do if you are sick with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)
What you need to know about coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Clark County Public Health:
https://www.clark.wa.gov/public-health/novel-coronavirus

Resources for the Homebound:
Download a list of local resources