Vaccination FAQs

Updated as information is made available.

Vaccine

Why get vaccinated?

Stopping a pandemic requires using all the tools available. Vaccines work with your immune system so your body will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed. Other steps, like wearing masks and social distancing, help reduce your chance of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others. Together, COVID-19 vaccination and following CDC's recommendations to protect yourself and others will offer the best protection from COVID-19. (Source: CDC)

Who can be vaccinated?

All adults are eligible to receive a vaccine in Texas.

  • Note: Most vaccines are authorized for people 18 years old and older; the FDA has authorized the Pfizer vaccine for use in people ages 5 and older.

How can I be vaccinated?

This depends on vaccine availability and scheduling of the provider you choose.

Vaccines are available at the Health District, clinics, urgent care clinics and pharmacies.

Check the DSHS COVID-19 Vaccine Information page and Vaccines.gov for the most up-to-date information.

What are boosters?

The first doses of COVID-19 vaccines don't provide lifelong immunity and the effectiveness of the vaccine decreases slowly over time. Boosters are similar to other vaccines such as the tetanus vaccine.

Everyone age 12 and older is eligible to get a COVID-19 booster dose:

  • Moderna recipients age 18 and older should get a booster at least 5 months after second shot.
  • Pfizer recipients age 12 and older should get a booster at least 5 months after second shot.
  • Johnson & Johnson recipients age 18 and older should get a Pfizer or Moderna booster at least 2 months after initial shot.
  • Children younger than 12: a booster is not recommended at this time.

Am I eligible for a 2nd booster dose?

Adults age 50 and older and some immunocompromised individuals are now eligible to get a second Pfizer or Moderna booster dose at least 4 months after their first booster (whether they received a Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson booster). Older adults—especially those with underlying medical conditions—and people with compromised immune systems are at higher risk of severe COVID-19, and are among those most likely to benefit from the additional protection of a second booster shot.

Choosing Your COVID-19 Booster Shot

You may choose which COVID-19 vaccine you receive as a booster shot. Some people may have a preference for the vaccine type that they originally received, and others may prefer to get a different booster. CDC’s recommendations now allow for this type of mix and match dosing for booster shots.

What is considered a third dose?

For people whose immune systems are expected to be able to respond well to a vaccine the recommended vaccine series for mRNA vaccines, Moderna and Pfizer, is to receive two doses to be fully immunized.

People whose immune system‘s are compromised to a significant degree are less likely to be fully immunized by just 2 doses and are felt to need a three dose initial series, with the third dose being given 28 days after the second dose. This three dose regimen was approved by the FDA in August. Those who are immune compromised and have already received their second dose more than 28 days ago can receive their third dose now. At this time there is not a recommendation for an additional dose to those who have immune compromise and have gotten the Johnson & Johnson/Jansen vaccine.

Those who have not yet received a COVID-19 vaccine are urged to do so, not only to protect themselves but also to prevent transmission to family, friends and your community.