Drawing Moderna Vaccine

Spencer Hodges, a Boone Drugs pharmacist, fills a syringe with the Moderna vaccine.

Below is a comprehensive list compiled by the Watauga Democrat to help readers find when and where they can sign up for a vaccine as well as common questions about the COVDI-19 vaccine. 

Who can currently get a COVID-19 vaccine?

Everyone in North Carolina 16 and older is eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. 

Where can I get a COVID-19 vaccine?

There are currently six providers of the COVID-19 vaccine in Watauga County:

AppHealthCare

People can either schedule a vaccine appointment online or by calling AppHealthCare’s Call Center at (828) 795-1970. Vaccine appointments will be added to its website as they are available based on vaccine supply; so the agency stated people should continue to check back regularly for additional appointments to be added. More info on how to get a vaccine from AppHealthCare can be found here

Appalachian Regional Healthcare System

To schedule a vaccine appointment with ARHS click here. If there are no appointments available, check back later as the agency stated it would continue to add appointments as needed. 

High Country Community Health

High Country Community Health is offering vaccines to people at its office and sometimes other locations. People can call its Boone office at (828) 262-3886. People can also monitor its Facebook page for updates here

Boone Drugs

Boone Drugs is administering vaccines at various locations in Watauga County. Each site and what vaccine it will administer can be found here. AppHealthCare stated that Boone Drugs does receive a regular shipment of the Pfizer vaccine and are open for appointments.

Appalachian State University

Appalachian State University is hosting community vaccine clinics as doses are available. More information on how to sign up for a COVID-19 vaccine through the university can be found here.

Walgreens

Walgreens is also providing COVID-19 vaccines through the federal government. People can schedule a vaccine at the Boone location here or call (828) 268-0727 for more details.

What vaccines are currently available in North Carolina?

North Carolina currently has three available vaccines for people to take, according to NCDHHS. The newest one is the Johnson and Johnson vaccine which arrived in the state on March 3 after the Food and Drug Administration issued emergency use authorization on Feb. 27.

Pfizer Vaccine

The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine was developed by Pfizer, Inc. and BioNTech. The vaccine is administered in two shots with 21 days in between. The Pfizer vaccine is the only vaccine approved for those 16 and 17 years old.  

According to the FDA, the vaccine was granted emergency use authorization on Dec. 11 after an analysis of 36,523 participants in a clinic trial that was made up of mostly United States residents. Among those who participated in the trial, 18,198 received the vaccine and 18,325 received a saline placebo.

The vaccine was 95 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 among those in the clinical trial. There were eight COVID-19 cases in the vaccine group and 162 COVID-19 cases in the placebo group during the clinical. Of these 170 COVID-19 cases, one in the vaccine group and three in the placebo group were classified as severe, according to the FDA.

Some of the most common side effects, which typically lasted several days, include pain at the injection site, tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, joint pain and fever. The FDA reports that most people who reported side effects did so after the second dose.

More information on the Pfizer vaccine can be found here and here.

Moderna Vaccine

The Moderna COVID-19 vaccine was created by ModernaTX Inc. The vaccine is administered in two shots with 28 days in between.

According to the FDA, the vaccine was granted emergency use authorization on Dec. 18 after an analysis of 28,207 participants in a clinical trial. Among those in the clinical trial, 14,134 received the vaccine and 14,073 received placebo. The Moderna vaccine was 94.1 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 disease among these clinical trial participants.

In the trial, 11 cases of COVID-19 were in the vaccine group and 185 cases in the placebo group. Of the 196 COVID-19 cases, the FDA reports 0 in the vaccine group and 30 in the placebo group were classified as severe. One severe case was identified in the vaccine group after the analysis (and not included among the 196 cases) and was awaiting confirmation at the time the FDA review was conducted, according to the FDA.

The FDA reported that the most common side effects, which typically last several days, are pain at the injection site, tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, joint pain, swollen lymph nodes in the same arm as the injection, nausea and vomiting, and fever. The FDA reports that most people who reported side effects did so after the second dose.

More information can be found here and here.

Johnson and Johnson (Janssen)

The Johnson and Johnson — or Janssen — COVID-19 vaccine was created by Janssen Biotech Inc., a Janssen Pharmaceutical Company of Johnson & Johnson. The vaccine is administered with only one shot, according to the FDA.

According to the FDA, the vaccine was granted emergency use authorization on Feb. 27 after an analysis of 39,321 participants in a clinical trial conducted in South Africa, certain countries in South America, Mexico and the United States. Among these participants, 19,630 received the vaccine and 19,691 received placebo.

The FDA reports the vaccine was approximately 67 percent effective in preventing moderate to severe/critical COVID-19 disease occurring at least 14 days after vaccination and 66 percent effective in preventing moderate to severe/critical disease at least 28 days after vaccination. The vaccine was approximately 77 percent effective in preventing severe or critical COVID-19 occurring at least 14 days after vaccination and 85 percent effective in preventing severe or critical COVID-19 occurring at least 28 days after vaccination.

There were 116 COVID-19 cases in the vaccine group and 348 COVID-19 cases in the placebo group that occurred at least 14 days after vaccination. Sixty-six cases occurred in the vaccine group and 193 cases occurred in the placebo group at least 28 days after vaccination.

The FDA reports the most common side effects are pain at the injection site, headache, fatigue, muscle aches and nausea. Most of those side effects occurred within one to two days following vaccination and were mild to moderate in severity and lasted one to two days.

More information can be found here and here.

Can you receive one shot of the Moderna vaccine and one shot of the Pfizer vaccine?

The FDA reports there is no data available on the interchangeability of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine with other COVID-19 vaccines, including the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. According to the FDA, if you receive a dose of the Pfizer vaccine, you should receive a second dose of the Pfizer vaccine as well. Same with the Moderna vaccine.

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