COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ
Updated March 2, 2021
Data collected from the New Jersey State website, CDC, and Passaic County website
The most important thing to know: Although it is frustrating and time consuming to secure a vaccine appointment, you should check every day, as new slots are constantly opening up.
As of January 14th, the current group of individuals that are eligible to receive the vaccine fall within groups 1A and 1B.
Healthcare Personnel (Phase 1A)
Paid and unpaid persons serving in health care settings who have the potential for direct or indirect exposure to patients or infectious materials, including, but not limited to:
- Licensed healthcare professionals like doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists
- Staff like receptionists, janitors, mortuary services, laboratory technicians
- Consultants, per diem, and contractors who are not directly employed by the facility
- Unpaid workers like health professional students, trainees, volunteers, and essential caregivers
- Community health workers, doulas, and public health professionals like Medical Reserve Corps
- Personnel with variable venues like EMS, paramedics, funeral staff, and autopsy workers
- All workers in acute, pediatric, and behavioral health hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers
- All workers in health facilities like psychiatric facilities, Federally Qualified Health Centers, and rehabs
- All workers in clinic-based settings like urgent care clinics, dialysis centers, and family planning sites
- All workers in long-term care settings like nursing homes, assisted living facilities, group homes, and others
- All workers in occupational-based healthcare settings like health clinics within workplaces, shelters, jails, colleges and universities, and K-12 schools
- All workers in community-based healthcare settings like PACE and Adult Living Community Nursing
- All workers in home-based settings like hospice, home care, and visiting nurse services
- All workers in office-based healthcare settings like physician and dental offices
- All workers in public health settings like local health departments, LINCS agencies, harm reduction centers, and medicinal marijuana programs
- All workers in retail, independent, and institutional pharmacies
- Other paid or unpaid people who work in a healthcare setting, who may have direct or indirect contact with infectious persons or materials, and who cannot work from home.
Long-Term Care Residents and Staff (Phase 1A)
All residents and staff of long-term and congregate care facilities, including:
- Skilled nursing facilities
- Veterans homes
- Assisted living facilities, continuing care retirement communities, and personal care homes
- Group homes like residential care homes, adult family homes, adult foster homes, and intellectual and developmental disabilities group homes
- HUD 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly Program residences
- Institutional settings like psychiatric hospitals, correctional institutions, county jails, and juvenile detention facilities (for eligible minors, e.g. 16+ years of age may be eligible for Pfizer vaccine under the emergency use authorization)
- Other vulnerable, congregate, long-term settings
First Responders (Phase 1B)
Sworn law enforcement, firefighters, and other first responders, including:
- New Jersey State Police troopers
- Municipal and county police officers
- Campus police officers
- Detectives in prosecutors’ offices and state agencies
- State agency/authority law enforcement officers (e.g. State Park Police and Conservation Officers, Palisades Interstate Parkway Officers, Human Services police, and NJ Transit police)
- Investigator, Parole and Secured Facilities Officers
- Aeronautical Operations Specialists
- Sworn Federal Law Enforcement Officers and Special Agents
- Bi-State law enforcement officers (e.g. Port Authority)
- Court Security Officers
- Paid and unpaid members of firefighting services (structural and wildland)
- Paid and unpaid members of Search and Rescue Units including technical rescue units and HAZMAT teams
- Paid and unpaid firefighters who provide emergency medical services
- Paid and unpaid members of Industrial units that perform Fire, Rescue and HAZMAT services
- Members of State Fire Marshal’s Offices
- Bi-State Fire Service Personnel (e.g. Port Authority)
Individuals at High Risk (Phase 1B)
Individuals aged 65 and older, and individuals ages 16-64 with medical conditions, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, that increase the risk of severe illness from the virus. These conditions include:
- Chronic kidney disease
- COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
- Down Syndrome
- Heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies
- Obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 30 kg/m2 or higher but < 40 kg/m2)
- Severe Obesity (BMI ≥ 40 kg/m2)
- Sickle cell disease
- Type 2 diabetes mellitus
If you are eligible to receive a vaccine, you can make an appointment directly with one of the many designated vaccination sites across the state. Click here to view a full list of these designated vaccination sites. Please note that many of these sites may be fully-booked. If sites are booked, attempt to call other locations in the area as spots may become available. No professional or medical documentation is required.
If you are not eligible to receive the vaccine yet, you cannot skip the line. If you don’t qualify for a vaccine at this time, register on the NJ Vaccine Scheduling System and they will notify you when the vaccine is available for you.
Specific dates have not been set for when the next group of individuals will receive the vaccine. This page will be updated daily with any additional information that becomes available.
There will be more vaccines available each week and in the coming months. Everyone is urged to be patient and understanding that everyone wants to get vaccinated as soon as possible.
There are currently over 4 million people in New Jersey who are eligible to be vaccinated, while there are approximately 100,000 doses available each week. While people are encouraged to pre-register, there are currently many more people seeking vaccination than there are appointments available across the state.
Although frustrating and time consuming, you should check every single day, as new slots are constantly opening up.
If you experience an error or need support with the New Jersey Vaccine Scheduling System, you can:
Note: Due to high call volumes, callers are experiencing long wait times. Your call will be answered in the order it was received.
About The NJ Vaccine Call Center
The State’s toll-free vaccination hotline (1-855-568-0545) is available to assist callers with identifying if they are currently eligible for a vaccination, pre-register for the vaccine, and to help them identify locations nearest to them where they can get vaccinated.
The hotline is open from 8 AM – 8 PM every day and can help callers in more than 240 different languages.
Due to limited vaccine supply, appointments continue to be limited and will not be immediately available for callers. As appointments become available in NJVSS the call center agents will be fully trained and ready to assist with scheduling.
In the near future, call center agents will also be able to assist callers in looking up registrations, scheduling appointments, and editing appointments in NJVSS.
Everyone should receive two doses of vaccine in order to have maximum protection against the virus.
- If you made your first dose appointment through the New Jersey Vaccine Scheduling System, you will receive an automatically scheduled second dose appointment by the end of day on Saturday, January 30. You will receive an email confirmation with the details of the second dose appointment.
- If you received your first dose by booking directly with a vaccine clinic and did not use the New Jersey Vaccine Scheduling System, you likely scheduled a second dose appointment when you had your first appointment. If you did not receive a second dose appointment at the time of receiving your first dose, you need to contact the site where you received your first vaccine for assistance scheduling the second dose.
- If you received a first dose at the Gloucester County Megasite before the state scheduling system was available you will be contacted directly by this site. The Gloucester County Megasite has already begun contacting individuals to schedule a second dose appointment.
It is recommended that individuals get their second dose as close to the recommended date as possible:
For Pfizer: 21 days after first dose
For Moderna: 28 days after first dose
However, there is no known loss of efficacy of the second dose as long as someone receives the second dose within six weeks of receiving their first dose.
As of February 9th, the Call Center’s ability to schedule appointments has been temporarily paused to streamline the system and ensure the needs of callers are met.
Are you struggling with emotional stress related to the COVID-19 pandemic?
WE’RE HERE TO HELP.
COVID Support Hotline: 973-842-4463
Open Sunday – Thursday 6 AM – 12 AM, Friday 6 AM – 4 PM