Vaccine distribution continues to ramp up around the country. During the first few months of distribution, those who are most vulnerable during the pandemic have received 78.6 million doses. Thus far, 26.2 million or 8% of Americans have been fully vaccinated. In the coming weeks, vaccine distribution will expand to the general public.
"I would imagine by the time we get to April, that would be what I call open season. Namely, virtually everybody and anybody in any category can start to get vaccinated," Dr. Anthony Fauci said on TODAY.
Concerts, travel, sporting events and other public gatherings will likely open soon thereafter in states that were previously closed off. However, there will be a mass rush to obtain vaccines as many people are eager to return to normal activity safely. In the hunt to get a vaccine quickest, thousands of young adults will be navigating the healthcare space for the first time on their own. Without the assistance of older family members, mentors or resources, it can often be difficult maneuvering a chaotic medical landscape. Here are a few common questions from those securing their vaccine.
I Don't Have Insurance. Can I Still Get The Vaccine?
This answer varies from state to state. It is important to ask your vaccine provider before receiving the vaccine. For general guidance, please refer to this statement from the CDC.
The federal government is providing the vaccine free of charge to all people living in the United States. Vaccination providers can be reimbursed for vaccine administration fees by the patient’s public or private insurance company or, for uninsured patients, by the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Provider Relief Fund. No one can be denied a vaccine if they are unable to pay a vaccine administration fee," the CDC stated.
When Can I Receive The Vaccine?
For young adults without pre-existing conditions or high-risk professions, vaccines will be available in May or June. Dr. Fauci has extended the nation's distribution timeline after learning that Johnson & Johnson had fewer doses available than originally thought.
"If you start talking about when the vaccine would be more widely available to the general population, I was hoping that that would be by the end of April, namely, have gone through all the priorities and now say, OK anyone can get it. That was predicated on J&J, the Johnson product, having considerably more doses than now we know they're going to have," Dr. Anthony Fauci said.
"So, that timeline will probably be prolonged, maybe into mid to late May and early June, that's fine."
How Can I Register To Get The COVID-19 Vaccine?
Registering to get the vaccine is fairly simple. Simply use the following template and fill in your state's abbreviation: vaccinate.state.gov.
For example, New York residents should visit vaccinate.ny.gov for more information.
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