COVID-19 Vaccine

Information about the Vaccine for COVID-19

We are an approved vaccine provider. At this time, we are following the state’s guidelines and vaccinating eligible patients and community members as we have stock available. If you are interested in getting vaccinated, please call our clinic. To learn more about the vaccine and where to get one visit: https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/covid-19/vaccine-get.htm.

In the meantime, please use this page as a resource to learn more about the vaccine.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between a third dose and a booster of the vaccine?
Right now, the terms are mainly a difference in eligibility and timing. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is recommending a third dose for moderately to severely immunocompromised people four weeks after receiving their second Moderna of Pfizer vaccine. That’s because immunocompromised people sometimes don’t build as much of a protective antibody response after the first two doses of the vaccine as people who are not immunosuppressed.

Booster shots are different in that they are going to be recommended for everyone eight months after their second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine. This is not because people have not built enough immunity following the initial vaccine, but because that immunity can wane over time. The booster shots are expected to start being administered in late September.  

Does the need for a booster mean that the vaccine doesn’t work?
No. The vaccine stimulates your immune system to make antibodies, and over time, the amount of antibodies in your system can decrease.  A booster dose brings those antibody levels back up and offers the best defense against COVID-19, including the Delta variant. 

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and CDC issued a joint press release regarding booster shots. You can read that release here:
https://www.fda.gov/news-events/press-announcements/joint-statement-hhs-public-health-and-medical-ex… 

When should I get a vaccine booster shot?
Eight months after you have received the second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine.

There is no recommendation at this time regarding the Johnson & Johnson (J&J/Jansen) vaccine. Expect an update from the FDA/CDC soon.

The booster shots are expected to be available in late September.

Should I call and schedule a time to get my booster shot?
If you received your vaccine from NorthLakes, expect a call from us to schedule a time as we get closer to the end of the eight month window. You don’t need to call us to schedule it. For most people this is going to be in the late Fall, closer to the holidays.

What if I lost my vaccine card?
This is what the CDC recommends to do if you have lost your vaccination card:

If you have lost your vaccination card or don’t have a copy, contact your vaccination provider directly to access your vaccination record.

  • If you cannot contact your vaccination provider directly, contact your state health department’s immunization information system (IIS). You can find state IIS information on the CDC website. Vaccination providers are required to report COVID-19 vaccinations to their IIS and related systems.
  • If you enrolled in v-safe or VaxText after your first vaccine dose, you can access your vaccination information using those tools.
  • If you have made every effort to locate your vaccination information, are unable to get a copy or replacement of your vaccination card, and still need a second shot, talk to a vaccination provider.

Do I need my vaccine card to receive a booster?
No.

When will patients get the vaccine?
Now. NorthLakes will be vaccinating people using the instructions and vaccines given to us by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the State of Wisconsin. We are currently vaccinating approved medical patients weekly at our medical sites.

We hope you all will consider getting vaccinated. Again, it’s the best way to protect ourselves and those we love. We encourage you to learn more about the vaccine and watch for vaccine updates on this website.

Do NorthLakes medical providers recommend we get the vaccine?
Yes! NorthLakes medical providers are excited for the vaccine and recommend all patients who are eligible get vaccinated.

Is the vaccine safe?
Yes, the vaccine is safe. The vaccine was tested in trials with thousands of Americans and no serious safety concerns were reported. The FDA takes these approvals very seriously. In addition, the science to develop this vaccine is NOT new. Scientists have been doing research on this type of vaccine for many years with previous outbreaks caused by related viruses. This research gave us a big head start. Safety is the top priority!

The CDC has set up a specific program (V-Safe) to monitor concerns that may come after receiving the vaccine. You can register online. Someone from the CDC will call to check on you at intervals after getting the vaccine. Your personal information will not be stored or shared.
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/safety/vsafe.html

Can I get COVID from the vaccine?
No, you cannot. The vaccine gives our body practice recognizing the virus and safely developing an immune response against it. None of the vaccines are live virus vaccines.

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/different-vaccines/mRNA.html

Are there side effects from the vaccine?
About 20% of people do experience side effects, such as fever and nausea, for one to two days. This is completely normal and means that both your immune system and the vaccine are doing their job. All results from the trials show a quick recovery from symptoms and no serious side effects. If your symptoms worsen, contact your medical provider.

Is the vaccine effective?
Very much so. All of the vaccines that are currently available in the United States are very effective against preventing severe cases of COVID-19 and will go a long way towards stopping the pandemic. 

How many doses do I need?
Right now, the Moderna and Pfizer vaccine require two doses separated by three to four weeks. The first and second dose must be from the same brand. It will take your body up to one month to develop the protection it needs.

The Johnson and Johnson vaccine is a single dose.

Can I choose which kind of vaccine I get at NorthLakes?
No. Right now, the government is supplying us with a weekly allotment of vaccines. The type is based on availability, not on patient preference.

How long does the immunity last?
At this point, we do not yet know how long immunity will last. This is something important that experts are currently trying to learn more about. The CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.

Do I still need to wear a mask and social distance?
YES, we need to use all the tools in our toolbox to keep ourselves, our loved ones, and our communities safe. The vaccine is just one tool. CONTINUE wearing a mask, washing your hands, and staying at least 6 feet away from others. Just because you have received the vaccine does not mean that you cannot transmit it if you have been exposed to it.

Who should get vaccinated?
The Pfizer vaccine is currently approved for people 12 years and older. The Moderna and Johnson and Johnson vaccine is approved for those who are over 18. Everyone should talk to their doctor before getting vaccinated.

Who should not get vaccinated?
Unfortunately, right now some people should NOT get the vaccine:
People with a severe allergy to a vaccine ingredient or to any vaccine.
People younger than 12 years old.
People who have COVID-19 symptoms or are isolated because of an exposure RIGHT NOW. You can
get vaccinated after you have recovered or are out of isolation.

Can I get the vaccine if I’m pregnant?
People who are pregnant should talk to their doctor or midwife about the vaccine.

Does the vaccine cause infertility?
No. For a while, there was misinformation being spread that the vaccine causes the body to make antibodies against the protein syncytin-1. Syncytin-1 is an important component of placenta in mammals. However, there is no proof that the vaccine will cause the body to attack and reject the protein. If you are trying to get pregnant, please talk to your primary care doctor about any concerns you have. Here is some additional information as well regarding infertility and the vaccine: https://www.webmd.com/vaccines/covid-19-vaccine/news/20210112/why-covid-vaccines-are-falsely-linked-to-infertility

Can I get the vaccine if I have an immune issue or disease?
People who have immune issues or diseases should talk to their doctors about getting the vaccine.

I’ve already had COVID, do I need to get the vaccine?
We recommend that all individuals who are eligible get the vaccine, even if you have already been diagnosed with COVID. There is no way to know whether or not you have enough immunity from your past exposure, and it is best to protect yourself with the vaccine.

Will the COVID-19 vaccine be free for our patients?
Yes. During the public health emergency, NLCC will be waiving any administration fees tied directly to administering the vaccine to our patients. The vaccine itself is provided to us for free as well during the public health emergency.

Will the second dose of the Moderna and Pfizer vaccine make me feel worse than the first?
The COVID-19 vaccine does not contain the virus itself, but you may experience some side effects that feel like COVID-19. This is a good sign. It means the vaccine is working and as a result, the second dose may create a stronger reaction as your body builds immunity to the virus. Clinical trials found that side effects, such as a sore arm, were common but mostly mild to moderate. However, other side effects such as fever, chills, tiredness, and headaches are more common after the second dose of the vaccine. These reactions aren’t unexpected but that doesn’t make them less scary or frustrating. If you have questions, please be sure to consult with your primary care doctor prior to getting the vaccine.

COVID-19 Provider Round Table Discussion

In response to the COVID-19 vaccine arriving in our communities, NorthLakes CEO, Reba Rice hosted a conversation with area physicians to learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine.

Thank you to Dr. White from Memorial Medical Center, Dr. Reitz from Red Cliff Community Health Center, and our own Dr. Dryer for taking part in this conversation.

Please take some time to watch the video below and continue doing what you can to keep our community safe.

Why I Vaccinate

In response to the COVID-19 vaccine arriving in our communities, NorthLakes Community Clinic Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Deb Dryer, shares her story about why she chose to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Please take some time to watch the video below and continue doing what you can to keep our community safe.

Additional Resources