COVID-19 Vaccination

CHAS Health encourages everyone to get vaccinated against COVID-19. We recognize this is a personal decision and that many people have questions about the vaccine. We encourage you to educate yourself about the vaccine and will provide more information as it comes out. You can also visit your state’s website for updates.

COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs

Who is currently eligible to receive COVID vaccines?

The timing for vaccinations for each phase of patients will follow state requirements, guidance from the CDC, and be determined by available vaccine quantities. Find out the latest information on Washington State Vaccine Prioritization or discover the Idaho State Vaccine Prioritization plan.

  • People who are 60 and older (previously 65+)
  • Workers in congregate settings, such as restaurants, manufacturing, and construction
  • Anyone with two or more underlying medical conditions such as cancer or heart disease
  • People living in a congregate setting, such as a correctional facility or group home, and those experiencing homelessness
  • Agricultural workers
  • Fishing vessel crews
  • Food processing workers
  • Grocery workers
  • Public transit workers
  • Firefighters
  • Law enforcement
  • Corrections, prison, jail, and detention center workers
  • Those over age 16 who are pregnant
  • Those over age 16 with a disability putting them at high-risk for severe COVID-19 illness
  • Pre-k-12 educators, school district employees, and licensed childcare workers
  • People 50 and older who also live in a multigenerational household
  • Health care workers
  • First responders
  • People who live or work in long-term care facilities
  • All other workers in health settings who are at risk of COVID-19

How does the vaccine work?

The COVID-19 vaccine teaches your immune system to recognize the coronavirus. When you get the vaccine, your immune system makes antibodies that stay in your blood and protect you in case you are infected with the virus. You get protection against the disease without having to get sick. When enough people in the community can fight off the coronavirus — something called herd or population immunity — it has nowhere to go. This means we can stop the spread quicker and get closer to ending the pandemic.

Why should I get vaccinated for COVID-19?

Vaccination helps reduce the spread of a virus and protects the people around you, including people who are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19. It is not possible to get COVID-19 from vaccines. The new COVID-19 vaccines use inactivated SARS-CoV-2 virus, parts of the virus, or a gene from the virus. None of these can cause COVID-19.

How do I know the vaccine is safe?

COVID-19 vaccines are carefully evaluated in clinical trials and are only allowed for use if the FDA considers them safe and effective. Safety and efficacy (how well the vaccine works to protect you) are determined by clinical trials. After clinical trials, medical experts examine test results and any side effects. If the vaccine works and is safe, it will get approved for distribution to the public.

According to the Washington State Department of Health, since we’re in a pandemic, developing a new vaccine can go faster than normal. No steps are skipped, but some steps happen at the same time, like applications, trials, and manufacturing. See the helpful video below to learn more about this process.

What are the side effects of the COVID vaccine?

You may see some rumors about untrue side effects online or on social media. Make sure any time you see a claim about a side effect that you check the source of that claim. This video can teach you more about how to figure out if a claim online is true or not.