Everything you NEED TO KNOW about signing up for the COVID Vaccine in Connecticut
As you may have heard, Connecticut along with the rest of the country is in the process of administering the COVID-19 vaccine. Although this is an exciting step forward, there has also been a lot of confusion regarding who is eligible and how to schedule. Connect Physical Therapy is here to help you understand everything you need to know!
Who is eligible?
Phase 1a included Healthcare Personnel, Long-Term Care Facility Residents, and Medical First Responders.
Currently the state is in Phase 1b and is currently scheduling Individuals 75 and older.
According to Connecticut’s COVID-19 Response website , Individuals between the ages of 65 and 74 will be eligible to schedule starting February 11th.
Scheduling information for Frontline essential workers and Individuals with an underlying medical condition with increased risk for severe illness will be coming soon.
Further information regarding Phase 1c has not yet been released.
How do I schedule an appointment for the vaccine?
There are currently many different options for scheduling your vaccine. Once you are eligible these options include:
Schedule by phone: Call Connecticut’s Vaccine Appointment Assist line at 877-918-2224, seven days a week from 8:00am to 8:00pm
Schedule using the Vaccine Administration Management System (VAMS). Bristol Health, Griffin Health, Nuvance Health, and Trinity Health of New England are all using VAMS to schedule.
Schedule through your provider: Medical providers that are administering the vaccine may contact their patients directly to schedule an appointment
Additional providers who have their own scheduling systems can be found here
Where do I go to receive my vaccine?
The vaccine will be available in a wide range of places including hospitals, physician offices, pharmacies, community health centers, and other locations. When scheduling, you will be notified of the exact location you need to go to in order to receive your vaccination.
What can I expect after I receive my vaccine?
Everyone can experience something a little bit different after receiving the vaccine, however side effects are normal signs that your body is building protection against COVID-19.
Common side effects include pain and/or swelling over the injection site, chills, tiredness, fever, and headache. These symptoms should only last a few days.
Using or doing gentle movements with your arm as well as applying a cool, clean, wet washcloth can help to reduce pain and discomfort over where you received the shot.
Be sure to drink plenty of fluids especially if you are experiencing a fever.
If you experience any of these symptoms, you can talk to your health care provider about taking an over the counter medicine such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. Also reach out to your health care provider if you have any concerns regarding your symptoms or if you experience difficulty breathing, swelling of the face or throat, a fast heartbeat, or dizziness and/or weakness.
What are the differences between the currently available vaccines?
Currently two vaccinations have been authorized by the Food and Drug Administration. The two vaccinations currently available are Pfizer and Moderna. Both are fairly similar, but below are a few ways in which these vaccinations differ.
Pfizer can be administered on those 16 and older, where as Moderna is for those 18 and older
You receive your second dose of Pfizer after 21 days and Moderna after 28 days
Moderna can be stored at -20 degrees Celsius, but Pfizer needs to stored at about -75 degrees Celsius (-103 degrees Fahrenheit)
Both vaccines use messenger RNA, but have slightly different structures and composition
Both vaccines have been found to be about 95% effective
Can people who have already had COVID-19 get the vaccine?
According to Connecticut’s COVID-19 Response website:
“Yes. The CDC recommends that you get vaccinated even if you have already had COVID-19 because you can catch it more than once. You can receive the vaccine any time after you are done with isolation and your symptoms have resolved but since you have antibodies for that 90 day period and re-infection is not likely during that time frame you can also choose to wait until after 90 days to get immunized.”
Do I still need to wear a mask after getting the vaccine?
Yes. It is important to continue to wear a mask, practice social distancing, and frequently wash your hands to help protect those that have not yet been vaccinated.
Currently, all physical therapists at Connect Physical Therapy have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and are familiar with the process in order to schedule. If you have any further questions regarding the COVID-19 vaccination, please feel free to respond via email or talk to your physical therapist in your next session!