COVID-19 Vaccines - VA Northern California Health Care System
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VA Northern California Health Care System

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COVID-19 Vaccines

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized three COVID-19 vaccines. Congress has passed a new law that allows us to offer COVID-19 vaccines to more people. VA is now able to offer vaccine to the following groups who are eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine at VA when their local VA facilities have enough vaccine:

  • Veterans
  • Spouse of a Veteran
  • Caregivers of a Veteran
  • Recipients of Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA) benefits

The best way to stay informed is to sign up to tell us you'd like to get a COVID-19 vaccine at VA. Your local VA facility will then contact you when they have a vaccine for you.

For your continued health and safety during this pandemic, please don't come to a VA health facility to request a COVID-19 vaccine without an appointment unless you are coming to a specific scheduled event such as a walk-in clinic or drive-through clinic that does not require an appointment.

Note: Your employer, pharmacy, or local public health officials may offer you a COVID-19 vaccine. We encourage you to take the first opportunity you have to get a vaccine at the most convenient location for you.

C19 Vaccine Picture

Updated April 6, 2021

The VA Northern California Health Care System (VANCHCS) is now offering COVID-19 vaccinations to anyone who served in the military, and their caregivers and spouses, and some other beneficiaries under the authority granted by the SAVE LIVES Act, signed by President Joe Biden March 24, 2021. This includes:


Veterans
: All Veterans are now eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine at VA. Eligibility includes anyone who served in the U.S. military, including the U.S. National Guard, Reserves, or Coast Guard, as well as:

 
  •  Commissioned officers of the Regular or Reserve Corp of the Public Health Service, or
  •  Commissioned officers of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (or Coast and Geodetic Survey), or
  •  Cadets at the U.S. Military, Air Force, or Coast Guard Academy, or
  •  Midshipmen at the United States Naval Academy

Spouses and Surviving Spouses of Veterans: For COVID-19 vaccine eligibility, we are including spouses of same-sex and common-law marriages. Eligibility includes a widow or widower of a Veteran. If an individual characterizes his or her relationship as spousal, he or she can receive the vaccine.

Caregivers of a Veteran: For COVID-19 vaccine eligibility, we define a caregiver as a family member or friend who provides care to the Veteran. Caregivers may help the Veteran with personal needs like feeding, bathing, or dressing. They may also help the Veteran with tasks like shopping or transportation. A person stating that they are the caregiver of a Veteran and giving the Veteran’s name is sufficient to give him or her a vaccine.

CHAMPVA Recipients: Recipients of Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA) benefits, including spouses or children of permanently and totally disabled Veterans or of Veterans who have died from service-connected disabilities. Recipients must meet CDC age requirements for vaccine administration.

The expanded authority depends on readily available COVID-19 vaccine supply and requires the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to continue to prioritize Veterans enrolled in VA care.

Veterans, spouses and caregivers newly eligible under the SAVES LIVES Act can go to va.gov/covid-19-vaccine to register and express interest in receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. Once registered, a scheduler will contact them to schedule an appointment.

Veterans enrolled in VA health care can request an appointment by:

  • sending a Secure Message in My HealtheVet to COVID VACCINE SCHEDULING – NCHCS
  • calling 1-800-382-8387 and selecting option 8. The call center is open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., excluding federal holidays, Monday through Friday.

COVID-19 VACCINE FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How can I register to be contacted for a COVID-19 vaccine appointment?

  • Veterans, spouses and caregivers newly eligible under the SAVES LIVES Act can go to va.gov/covid-19-vaccine to register and express interest in receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. Once registered, a scheduler will contact them to schedule an appointment.
  • Veterans enrolled in VA health care can request an appointment by:
    • sending a Secure Message in My HealtheVet to COVID VACCINE SCHEDULING – NCHCS
    • calling 1-800-382-8387 and selecting option 8. The call center is open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., excluding federal holidays, Monday through Friday.

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Where can I receive a COVID-19 vaccine from VANCHCS?

1. By appointment. COVID-19 vaccinations are available by appointment only at our vaccine clinics in Mather, Martinez, Auburn, Chico, Fairfield, Mare Island, McClellan, Oakland, Redding, Yreka and Yuba City.


2. Walk-In Vaccine Clinics. Several locations at VANCHCS offer COVID-19 vaccines on a walk-in basis, excluding federal holidays. When attending a walk-in clinic, please keep in mind that walk-in visits will be accepted while supplies last. The best way to ensure supply is available during your visit is to schedule a vaccine appointment. Veterans, spouses and caregivers newly eligible under the SAVES LIVES Act can go to http://www.va.gov/covid-19-vaccine to register.

    Beginning 4/12
     Beginning 4/19

3. Community and Saturday Events. Veterans, spouses and caregivers can receive COVID-19 vaccines at one of the events listed below by appointment only.

  • Saturday, April 10, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
    Solano County Events Center
    601 Texas St., Conference Room A
    Fairfield, CA 94533
  • Saturday, April 10, 8 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
    Martinez VA Medical Center
    Building AB-6
  • Saturday, April 17, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.
    Redding VA Clinic
  • Saturday, April 24, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
    COVID-19 Vaccine Drive-Up Clinic
    Near Sacramento VA Medical Center, at the corner of Peter A. McCuen Blvd. and Femoyer St.

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If I’m not enrolled in VA care or VA’s Caregiver’s Program, do I need to bring anything with me to receive a COVID-19 vaccine?

No, just show up to any walk-in clinic or to your schedule vaccine appointments. Those who are not enrolled in VA will be asked to complete a “COVID-19 VACCINATION WORKSHEET.”

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Can I choose which authorized COVID-19 vaccine I get?

Depending on supply, VANCHCS is offering the Moderna, Pfizer-BioNTech and Janssen COVID-19 vaccines across the health care system. At this time, Veterans are not able to choose which vaccine they receive. For the next several months, we won't have enough vaccines to allow you to choose which vaccine you’d like to receive. We will reassess as more vaccines become available.

The Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines require two doses to work. And you must get the same vaccine for both doses. You’ll need to get both doses at the same facility.

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I have a specific medical condition and don’t know if it’s a good idea for me to be vaccinated. Who should I ask?

If you have a question about your personal medical history, please communicate with your primary care provider. You can also learn quite a bit about the specifics of the COVID-19 vaccine at our Keep Me Informed tool.

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What can I do to fight COVID-19?

Keep up the 3W’s! It’s important for everyone to continue using all the tools available to help stop this pandemic as we learn more about how COVID-19 vaccines work in real-world conditions. Even after vaccination, Veterans and employees should continue to:

  • Wear a face covering
  • Watch your distance (stay 6 feet apart)
  • Wash hands frequently

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I am a Veteran who is not enrolled in VA health care, how can I enroll for VA care?

Click here to find out if you’re eligible and how to apply.

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How can I stay informed about the vaccine?

Please check for COVID-19 vaccination information updates on our website. You may also stay informed and express your interest in receiving the COVID-19 vaccine at www.va.gov/health-care/covid-19-vaccine/stay-informed. You can also visit VA's vaccine information page.

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Contact Info

Location

  • VA Northern California Health Care System

Contact Number(s)

  • 800-382-8387 Ext. 8

Hours of Operation

  • 7 a.m. - 6 p.m.
    Monday - Friday