The COVID Vaccine: Eligibility & Scheduling
As of early this month, senior Oregonians ages 80 and older became eligible for vaccines against COVID-19, making older residents the newest group to gain access to the vaccine after other select groups, such as healthcare workers. But with such a high demand for the vaccine, as well as delays due to our recent snow and ice storms, many were left with questions about who exactly would be eligible, and how they could schedule an appointment. We’ll help break it down for you!
Only seniors within certain age groups will be eligible (for now).
There will be four phases to vaccinate seniors in Oregon throughout the winter, with the first phase including only seniors 80 and older, and the second phase, which was scheduled to start February 15, including seniors 75 years and older.
Phase 3, seniors 70 years and older, is scheduled to begin on February 22, and phase 4, seniors 65 and older on March 1.
How do I know when I can schedule?
The state has debuted a new tool that will allow users to sign up for email alerts or text notifications about vaccine events in their area. You can learn more here. Select pharmacies, such as Costco, Safeway, Albertsons and Fred Meyer, may also be able to provide some information on vaccines and their availability.
How can I schedule an appointment for myself or for a senior in my care?
Eligible seniors can make an appointment online by visiting covidvaccine.oregon.gov. In the center of the page there’s a link that says “Vaccine Eligibility & FAQ Tool,” as well as a button that says “Let’s Get Started.”
Clicking that option will open an online chat service to determine whether you’re eligible to receive the vaccine, and if so, it will redirect you to an appointment page.
If you find yourself frustrated with the online scheduling system, please reach out to our Seniors On The Move Coordinator, Jennifer Jones, for tips on navigating the online tool.
Jennifer Jones | Phone: 503.421.0323 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
How quickly can I expect to be scheduled?
Some may be able to schedule within a matter of days, while others may take longer to get an appointment. There are a few factors that may impact how quickly you are able to get an appointment, such as the number of eligible people seeking appointments at that time, and your ability to navigate the online scheduling system. If you do have difficulty navigating the online scheduling system, or do not have access to a smart phone or the internet, you can call 2-1-1 for assistance or text ORCOVID to 898211 to begin a conversation about scheduling an appointment.
Where can I get a vaccination?
There will be mass clinics available at the Oregon Convention Center and Portland International Airport, as well as at the Oregon State Fairgrounds, but you must have an appointment scheduled prior to attending. Dates for these clinics will be available online through covidvaccine.oregon.gov.
Local pharmacies will also eventually be able to offer vaccinations in some Oregon Counties. Oregon Health Authority Director Patrick Allen shared that the state will receive 13,000 doses that will be distributed amongst 133 different pharmacies.