COVID-19 Vaccine Information for Health Professionals
COVID-19 vaccine planning is currently happening at federal, state, and local levels of government. Planning details are limited at this time, but we will update information as we learn more.
Phases of COVID-19 vaccination
COVID-19 vaccination will take a phased approach. Phase 1 may begin as early as November 2020, with very limited doses. These very early doses will likely be given to people working in health care settings who have the potential for direct or indirect exposure to patients and are unable to work from home. Other groups that may get some of the earlier doses are adults with high-risk medical conditions, older adults, and some additional essential workers.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC)'s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) will determine the final priority groups. We expect their recommendations in late October or early November 2020.
Early on, vaccine will likely go to hospitals, long-term care, and other closed settings. Most community-based health care providers will not have an active vaccination role during phase 1.
More settings will get vaccine during phase 2, when a larger number of doses become available. It is at this stage that community-based providers will play a key role. We do not know yet when phase 2 will begin.
Planning for COVID-19 vaccine
Multiple candidate vaccines are currently in clinical trials. It is not yet known which vaccine(s) will get approved. CDC has shared the following COVID-19 vaccine planning assumptions:
- Two doses of COVID-19 vaccine will be needed with some vaccine candidates. Both doses must be of the same product, and will need to be separated by either 21 days or 28 days, depending on the vaccine.
- COVID-19 vaccine providers must sign a federal COVID-19 vaccination agreement and enroll with their state immunization program to receive vaccine. Find more information on provider registration at COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Registration.
- Enrolled vaccination providers will get COVID-19 vaccines from their state immunization program. Vaccines will not be available for purchase.
COVID-19 vaccines and additional supplies will be distributed at no cost to providers registered for COVID-19 vaccination. Supply kits will include syringes, needles, alcohol prep pads, COVID-19 vaccine record cards, and some supply of surgical masks and face shields. COVID-19 vaccines that require reconstitution with diluent or mixing with adjuvant at the point of administration will come with mixing kits with syringes, needles, and other needed supplies.
- Insurance reimbursement for vaccine administration costs are under consideration.
- Some vaccine candidates require ultralow cold (ULC) chain storage. However, buying storage devices for ULC storage is not recommended at this time.
- The federal government expects reporting of doses administered by providers. In Minnesota, we will use our statewide immunization information system, the Minnesota Immunization Information Connection (MIIC). Providers may report either via an electronic interface or by data entry into the MIIC user interface. Learn more at Minnesota Immunization Information Connection (MIIC).
We are hosting a series of webinars for anyone who works in health care to learn about COVID-19 vaccine. The webinar platform has a capacity limit of 1,000 participants, so recordings will be posted here.
- Webex Recording: Making and Approving a Safe and Effective Vaccine (30 minutes)
Recorded on Nov. 24, 2020
Lynn Bahta, RN, MPH, CPH
- Interim COVID-19 Vaccination Plan Executive Summary
Summary of Minnesota's draft COVID-19 vaccination plan that was directed by CDC.
- Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Vaccines
U.S. vaccination plans, recommendations, and more from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).