After a year of struggling to survive a pandemic, things finally appear to be turning around. Infection rates are falling sharply, and millions of Americans have been vaccinated against the threat of COVID-19.
If you are among those who are eligible for vaccination, it can be a challenge to find a vaccine provider. Fortunately, there are tools that can make the search process easier.
1. Try VaccineFinder.org
That is the good news. The bad news is that when you first go to VaccineFinder.org, you will see this pop-up message:
“This website includes the latest information on COVID-19 vaccine availability at certain providers and pharmacies in Alaska, Tennessee, Indiana, and Iowa. In other states, information may be limited while more providers and pharmacies are added in the coming weeks.”
In other words, this could be a great tool — eventually. If a search for your ZIP code yields no results, you’ll need to be patient until the tool is running at full speed.
2. Visit pharmacy chain websites
Another option for finding a local provider is to go to the website of a major pharmacy chain. There, you should find information about where to get vaccinated, especially if the chain is among the many that are participating in the CDC’s Federal Retail Pharmacy Program for COVID-19 Vaccination.
For example, go to Walmart’s pharmacy website, click on “Flu Shots & Immunizations,” and you will reach the pharmacy’s “COVID-19 vaccines” page. There you can see an interactive map of locations that currently offer the COVID-19 vaccine and schedule an appointment to receive it.
For a complete list of pharmacy chains that are participating in the federal vaccination program, check the CDC’s list.
3. Check with your state or local department of health
Calling your state health department — or perusing its website — also can be a fruitful avenue to explore.
Many states have webpages devoted to helping residents find the COVID-19 vaccine. Examples include Florida and Minnesota. Do a web search, or see the CDC’s list of websites for state and territory health departments.
4. Ask local pharmacies
If you can’t find a provider via government tools or pharmacy websites, a fourth and final option for hunting down the vaccine is to call around.
If you find an appointment through one of these tools, congratulations! Now be sure to read “This Simple Mistake Might Weaken Your COVID-19 Vaccination” before you get your first dose of the vaccine.
For more on the vaccine, check out “5 Common Side Effects of the COVID-19 Vaccine.”