COVID-19 Vaccine Information

The COVID-19 Vaccines are safe, effective, and free
to everyone ages 5 and up

Regardless of immigration or insurance status.

Booster doses of all three COVID-19 vaccines are now available.

Book an Appointment   Find a drop-in clinic   Vaccinate in Home

Individuals who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 can be vaccinated once they have recovered and at least 10 days have passed since their diagnosis. This applies to any COVID-19 vaccination, including boosters.

Individuals who have other moderate or severe acute illness with or without fever should generally wait until recovery from acute symptoms.

    COVID-19 Vaccines for Children

    The County of Santa Clara is now providing COVID-19 vaccinations for children ages 5-11 following the November 2 approval from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    Parents and legal guardians can book an appointment or find a convenient drop-in location to vaccinate their child. Vaccines for children ages 5-11 are smaller doses and specially formulated for kids. Under federal guidelines vaccine supplies designated for older patients cannot be used for this younger age group. Families are also encouraged to check with their primary care physician or their local pharmacy to see if they are offering vaccine appointments for children as well.

    While COVID-19 infection tends to be milder in children compared with adults, it can make children very sick and cause children to be hospitalized. In some situations, children can experience sever complications including death.

    Learn more about COVID-19 vaccines for children...

    COVID-19 Boosters

    The County of Santa Clara Public Health Department recommends all eligible members of the public who live or work in Santa Clara County receive a COVID-19 booster shot. The booster is appropriate for everyone ages 18 and older 6 months following the last Pfizer or Moderna vaccination, or 2 months following the Johnson & Johnson vaccination.

    County clinics are taking appointments and many locations readily accept drop-in patients for booster doses. Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are all available within the County. Additionally, many doctor offices and pharmacies provide COVID-19 boosters.

    Vaccinations through the County are no-cost to the public, insurance is not required, and there are no immigration requirements.

    Book an Appointment   Find a drop-in clinic   Visit Myturn

    Third Doses

    Additional Doses for immunocompromised patients after two doses of Pfizer or Moderna: 3rd doses of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines have been authorized for patients who are at least 28 days from their last dose and who are moderately or severely immunocompromised. At this time, additional doses after receiving the Johnson and Johnson vaccine have not been authorized. If you are not sure whether you qualify for a 3rd dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines, please consult with your physician.

    Those who qualify for an additional dose is someone who is moderately or severely immunocompromised as defined by the CDC:

    • 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 2 years of transplantation or taking immunosuppression therapy)
    • Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (e.g., DiGeorge, Wiskott-Aldrich syndromes)
    • 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, TNF blockers, and other biologic agents that are immunosuppressive or immunomodulatory

    An additional dose should match the original vaccine series that you received (for example, if you have completed the Pfizer vaccine series, you will receive an additional dose of Pfizer if you are moderately or severely immunocompromised). To ensure that you receive the correct 3rd dose, please bring a copy of your COVID-19 vaccine record.

    Book an Appointment   Find a drop-in clinic

    COVID-19 Vaccine Appointment

    Individuals who are eligible to be vaccinated are encouraged, but not required, to contact their healthcare system to make an appointment. Many providers below are able to vaccinate patients regardless of their regular healthcare provider. Check back regularly, new appointments are being added daily

    Sites offer accessible services for people with disabilities and those with other access or functional needs. When you arrive, if you need an accommodation, alert the staff on site. The Guide for Disability and Functional Needs Access at Santa Clara County Mass COVID-19 Vaccination Sites has information about how to access clinics, as well as types of services offered.

    1 County-operated sites are available in Mountain View, San Jose, Morgan Hill, San Martin, and all Valley Health Center clinics.
    2 Clinic is for children 5 to 17 years of age.

    Drop-In Vaccination Clinics (No Appointments Required)

    Providers throughout the county have drop-in vaccination sites available. Sites offer accessible services for people with disabilities and those with other access or functional needs. When you arrive, if you need accommodation, alert the staff on site.

    The County of Santa Clara Public Health Department recommends all eligible members of the public who live or work in Santa Clara County receive a COVID-19 booster shot. The booster is appropriate for everyone ages 18 and older 6 months following the last Pfizer or Moderna vaccination, or 2 months following the Johnson & Johnson vaccination.

    Find a drop-in clinic

    Free Transportation to Vaccination Locations

    The County and VTA have launched a free, door-to-door service to transport patients to their vaccine appointments.  Accessible VTA paratransit vehicles will pick patients up, take them to their appointment, wait for them, and then provide the return trip. Anyone for whom transportation is a barrier to getting vaccinated can utilize this service, 7 days per week. Call the COVID-19 Assistance Navigation (CAN-19) resource hotline at 408-809-2124 at least 48 hours prior to your vaccine appointment to request this no cost service. VTA can provide up to 50 rides per day.

    Learn more about bus routes and Access Paratransit provided by VTA.

    Learn More About the Vaccines

    Fact Sheets issued by the U.S. federal government are available.

    Fact Sheets issued by the Santa Clara County Public Health Department.

    More information about Fact Sheets.

    Frequently Asked Questions

        Children can get sick from COVID-19. Some children get rare but severe complications from the COVID-19 virus. The vaccine is the best protection.

        A child can also spread COVID-19 to other people even if that child does not have symptoms. The vaccine is the best prevention.

        Vaccinated children will be able to participate in more activities and attend more events.

        Yes! All children ages 5 to 11 will be eligible for the Pfizer vaccine. Children with allergies to food or animals should get the COVID-19 vaccine. You can speak with a nurse at the clinic if you have concerns. If your child is sick with COVID-19 right now, they must wait until they get better to get the vaccine.

        Yes. Having COVID-19 does not prevent your child from getting the virus again. The vaccine is the best protection to prevent your child from getting COVID-19 again.

        The Pfizer vaccine for children age 5 to 11 is a smaller dose than the Pfizer vaccine for adults. It is one-third of an adult dose. Just like adults, children need two doses of the vaccine, three weeks apart.

        Studies found that the vaccine for children is safe and works well to protect children from COVID-19. Hundreds of millions of adults have already taken the safe and effective Pfizer vaccine.

        Yes. If the consent form is complete and signed, your child can get vaccinated without a parent or guardian present. A parent or guardian may need to be available by phone during the time of the appointment.

        Some people feel mild side effects after vaccination. Common side effects are redness where the shot was given, muscle aches, and fever.

        No. There is no effect on female or male fertility.

        Heart health problems are very rare. Symptoms are usually mild and can be treated. COVID-19 disease causes more serious health problems than the vaccine. The vaccine is the best protection against COVID-19 heart health problems.

        Our staff keep children feeling comfortable and safe during vaccination. You can hold your child on your lap while they get the shot.

        If your child has fever, headache, chills, or body aches soon after vaccination, they should stay home.

        • If they are better within 48 hours, your child can go back to school.
        • If they still feel sick longer than 48 hours, keep your child at home and talk to your child’s doctor to make sure they don’t have COVID-19 or another infection.
        • Please remember, the vaccine can’t give your child COVID, but they could have been infected just before getting vaccinated.

          All individuals age 5 and older are eligible to be vaccinated.

          There are several options for you to get a record of your COVID vaccination:

          1. Individuals may request a vaccine verification from the state:
            1. Digital COVID-19 Vaccine Record: https://myvaccinerecord.cdph.ca.gov/ (provides immediate results)
            2. California Immunization Registry: https://cairforms.cairweb.org/AuthorizationToRelease/AuthorizationToRelease (provides reports in 2-3 weeks)

          OR

           

          1. Access your vaccine record through a healthcare system in the county:
            1. If you were vaccinated at a mass vaccination site or mobile vaccination site run by the County of Santa Clara, please visit the Exposition Hall at the County Fairgrounds at 2542 Monterey Rd, San Jose, CA 95111 Entrance Gate D to request a replacement card.
            2. If you were vaccinated by any other provider, please contact the healthcare provider that administered the vaccine.
            3. You may also contact your regular primary healthcare provider for your vaccine record.

           

          OR

           

          1. Beginning July 12, individuals will have the option to request their COVID-19 vaccine record in-person at the Public Health Department Travel/Immunization Clinic located at 976 Lenzen Ave. Suite #1100 San Jose, CA 95126, phone number: 408-792-5200.

          Under the County’s ‘no wrong door’ policy, all providers (with the exception of the VA) will vaccinate eligible patients regardless of your healthcare provider or insurance. See above for the latest options on how to book an appointment or find a drop-in site for your vaccination.​​​​​

          Depending on where you receive the vaccine, you may or may not be given a choice of options. The County Health System offers either Pfizer or Moderna (2-dose mRNA vaccines) at all of its vaccination clinics. In addition, the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine is available upon request.

          Yes, all of the County Health System vaccination sites are ADA compliant.​

          Each vaccination clinic has a special workflow to ensure individuals with disabilities can safely and comfortably access the site. Each site has designated parking for anyone with mobility challenges. Wheelchairs are available as needed onsite to provide access to registration, vaccination, and observation areas to minimize distances to walk between stations.​

          COVID-19 vaccines are available at no cost, but they are only available to eligible individuals.​​​

          If there are appointments available, eligible individuals who received their first vaccination dose in another county, may register to receive their second dose in Santa Clara County. You can schedule your appointment online at vax.sccgov.org or call (408) 970-2000. In addition, drop-in vaccination sites will accept drop-ins for second dose appointments. How do I cancel an appointment with the County Health System?

          Right now, the way to cancel an appointment is the call Valley Connections at 408-970-2000.  We are working on additional methods to cancel appointments and expect to have more options soon.

            All authorized COVID-19 vaccines were tested in large clinical trials with tens of thousands of volunteers of different ages, races, and ethnicities to ensure their safety and effectiveness. The FDA, CDC, and ACIP have all evaluated the trial information and determined the vaccines to be safe, effective, and of high quality. These groups are continuing to monitor the safety of COVID-19 vaccines to make sure even very rare side effects are identified and appropriate precautions are taken.​

            The vaccines were developed rapidly because:

            1. manufacturing started while the clinical trials were still underway (normally manufacturing doesn’t begin until after completion of the trials);
            2. mRNA vaccines are faster to produce than other kinds of vaccines,
            3. FDA and CDC were and are prioritizing the review process for COVID-19 vaccines; and
            4. researchers used existing clinical trial networks to quickly begin conducting the COVID vaccine trials.

            Patients with underlying medical conditions can receive the vaccine. In fact, it is important that this group be vaccinated because they are at increased risk of having severe COVID-19 illness. Immunocompromised individuals (for example, persons living with HIV, transplant recipients, and those taking immunosuppressive medications) may receive the COVID-19 vaccines. However, because sufficient data is not yet available to establish vaccine efficacy in this population, immunocompromised individuals should be counseled by their healthcare provider on the potential for reduced immune response to the vaccine and the need to continue to follow all current guidance to protect themselves against COVID-19 even after getting vaccinated.​​​

            Yes. COVID-19 vaccines are safe for you and your baby.

            • The vaccines protect expectant mothers. Individuals who get COVID-19 while pregnant are at increased risk of severe illness. The vaccine will keep you safer.
            • If you are trying to get pregnant, the vaccine is also recommended for you. There is no evidence it affects fertility.
            • COVID-19 vaccine is safe for the developing baby. Research suggests that getting vaccinated both protects mothers and also passes on antibodies to babies that better protect them.
            • Vaccination helps avoid pregnancy complications. People who get COVID-19 are at increased risk of pre-term birth.

            Talk to your doctor for more information about vaccines and pregnancy.

            Almost everyone should get vaccinated against COVID-19.

            Individuals with a history of allergic reactions that are not related to vaccines or injectable therapies may receive a COVID-19 vaccine. For example, people who are allergic to food, pets, venom, pollen, latex, or oral medications should get vaccinated against COVID-19.

            A very few people may be allergic to a component of one of the vaccines. Those individuals are usually recommended to receive a different type of COVID-19 vaccine. For example, people who cannot receive the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines may be recommended to receive the J&J vaccine. If you know you are allergic to an ingredient in some of the vaccines, talk to a special kind of doctor called an allergist-immunologist before receiving the vaccine.

            If you had a severe reaction to a different vaccine (not COVID-19) or injectable medication in the past, also talk to your doctor before getting vaccinated against COVID-19.

            Individuals who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 can be vaccinated once they have recovered and at least 10 days have passed since their diagnosis.  This applies to any COVID-19 vaccination, including boosters.

            Individuals who received passive antibody (monoclonal antibodies or convalescent serum) as treatment for COVID-19 should defer vaccination for at least 90 days after antibody therapy.

            In April 2021, the federal government and vaccine manufacturer investigated rare health incidents in a very small number of people out of the nearly 7 million doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine administered nationwide. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ (ACIP) and the Western States Scientific Safety Review (WSSSR) found that the Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) vaccine is safe and that health providers should resume its administration to prevent community spread and severe illness and death from COVID-19. These groups also recommended that the vaccine include a warning label so that members of the public can make an informed decision about this vaccine. The County Public Health Department has a fact sheet about the Johnson & Johnson vaccine available here.

            It is important to remember that the vaccines were studied with tens of thousands of volunteers of different ages, races, and backgrounds and have been safely administered to millions of people nationwide. Studies have found that serious side effects are very rare, and the vaccines are very safe.

            The County Health System offers either Pfizer or Moderna (2-dose mRNA vaccines) at all of its vaccination clinics. In addition, the single dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine is available upon request.

              Clinical trials involving tens of thousands of individuals have demonstrated that the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Janssen (also known as Johnson & Johnson) vaccines are highly effective at preventing severe COVID-19 illness and death.

              ​Starting from two weeks after receiving the second dose for Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna or the single dose Janssen/Johnson & Johnson​​.​​​​​

              Yes. The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is authorized for administration in patients age 5 years and older.  All County Health System sites currently offer the Pfizer vaccine. The Moderna and Janssen/J&J vaccines are only authorized in patients age 18 years and older.

              A consent form signed by a parent, legal guardian, or other adult with legal custody is required for anyone under the age of 18 to get vaccinated. This form is available online and at the vaccination site.  If the parent/guardian is not present, they must be available by phone at the time of the appointment.

              Vaccine recipients commonly experience mild to moderate side effects that occur within the first three days of vaccination and resolve within 1-3 days of onset. These are normal signs that your body is building protection. Common side effects include mild to moderate pain, swelling, or redness at the injection site and/or mild to moderate flu-like symptoms (for example, fever, fatigue, headache, chills, muscle aches). Serious side effects are very rare.

              We have strong evidence that being vaccinated will prevent you from getting severely ill and dying from COVID-19. While you can still get an asymptomatic infection or mild illness, growing evidence suggests that being vaccinated makes this possibility less likely than if you were never vaccinated.

              It’s important to keep in mind that it typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity after vaccination. That means it is possible a person could contract COVID-19 shortly after vaccination and get sick because the vaccine has not had enough time to provide protection.​

              Yes. Due to the severe health risks associated with COVID-19 and the fact that reinfection with COVID-19 is possible, you should be vaccinated regardless of whether you already had a COVID-19 infection. If you were treated for COVID-19 with intravenous monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma, you should wait 90 days before getting a COVID vaccine. Otherwise, you can receive a vaccine dose after you have recovered from acute illness and have completed your isolation period. Talk to your doctor if you are unsure what treatment you received or if you have more questions about getting a vaccine. Experts do not yet know how long someone is protected from getting sick again after recovering from COVID-19. Note: Some healthcare organizations may prioritize for vaccination those who have not had a previous infection in the prior 90 days.​​​​​​

              Yes. The CDC recommends that all persons who have been exposed to COVID-19 in the past be vaccinated. Individuals should complete their quarantine period prior to visiting a vaccination site.​​​

              Yes. At this time, unless a public health order or directive says otherwise, a person’s vaccination status does not exempt them from State and County public health orders and directives. The County will evaluate new data and evidence regarding the effects of vaccination as they come in, and may adjust this policy in the future.​

              No, if you meet all of the following criteria:

              • Your exposure occurred after 14 days after the completion of your vaccine series
              • You do not have any COVID-19 symptoms
              • You are not an inpatient or resident in a healthcare setting or facility

              As more community members become fully vaccinated and as the CDC and California Department of Public Health are updating their guidance, the County has modified its recommendations as well. Fully vaccinated persons do not need to be tested in many circumstances that do still require testing for unvaccinated persons. For example, fully vaccinated persons do not need to be tested upon return from domestic travel (although they do still need to be tested after arriving from international travel). However, fully vaccinated individuals who are exposed to someone with COVID should be tested immediately and on day 5 from the exposure.

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