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COVID-19 Vaccine Information for Older Adults
Image shows an older man receiving a vaccination shot from a health care professional.

The state of Ohio is providing COVID-19 vaccines to any Ohio adult who chooses to receive one.

All Ohioans age 16 and older are now eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. 

Vaccine Access for Older Ohioans

Ohio COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Locations

Ohio Statewide Vaccine Scheduling Tool

Vaccines for older Ohioans will be given by local health departments, hospitals, federally-qualified health centers, and some retail pharmacies. The statewide vaccine scheduling tool allows Ohioans to determine their eligibility for the vaccine and link to local providers to set an appointment. A provider search tool also allows Ohioans to search by county and ZIP code to find a provider in their area to administer the vaccine. Vaccine supplies are limited. For best results, contact multiple providers and be patient. Vaccines are given as supply becomes available.

For assistance finding and accessing the COVID-19 vaccine for older adults in your community, please contact your area agency on aging. Call 1-866-243-5678 to be connected to the agency serving your community or find local contact information. 

If you or a loved one are unable to leave your home to get a COVID-19 vaccine, please contact your local health department for assistance.


Regional Mass Vaccination Sites

The State of Ohio is sponsoring mass vaccination clinics around the state. Appointments can be scheduled by visiting gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov or by calling 1-833-427-5634 (1-833-4-ASK-ODH).

Older adults who are interested in attending one of these mass vaccination clinics, but who need help with transportation should call 2-1-1 or their area agency on aging to ask about transportation options in your community.

Regional Vaccine Information

Use the statewide provider search or the statewide scheduling tool to locate COVID-19 providers in your area, or access the links below to find local vaccine information and related resources from your area agency on aging. Call 1-866-243-5678 to be connected to the agency serving your community.

Image shows the 12 service regions of Ohio.Region 1 (Southwestern Ohio)
Butler, Clermont, Clinton, Hamilton & Warren counties

Region 2 (West Central Ohio)
Champaign, Clark, Darke, Greene, Logan, Miami, Montgomery, Preble & Shelby counties

Region 3 (Lower Northwestern Ohio)
Allen, Auglaize, Hancock, Hardin, Mercer, Putnam & Van Wert counties

Region 4 (Northwestern Ohio)
Defiance, Erie, Fulton, Henry, Lucas, Ottawa, Paulding, Sandusky, Williams & Wood counties

Region 5 (North Central Ohio)
Ashland, Crawford, Huron, Knox, Marion, Morrow, Richland, Seneca & Wyandot counties

Region 6 (Central Ohio)
Delaware, Fairfield, Fayette, Franklin, Licking, Madison, Pickaway & Union counties

Region 7 (Southern Ohio)
Adams, Brown, Gallia, Highland, Jackson, Lawrence, Pike, Ross, Scioto & Vinton counties

Region 8 (Southeastern Ohio)
Athens, Hocking, Meigs, Monroe, Morgan, Noble, Perry & Washington counties

Region 9 (East Central Ohio)
Belmont, Carroll, Coshocton, Guernsey, Harrison, Holmes, Jefferson, Muskingum & Tuscarawas counties

Region 10A (Eastern Lakefront)
Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain & Medina counties

Region 10B (Akron/Canton Area)
Portage, Stark, Summit & Wayne counties

Region 11 (Northeastern Ohio)
Ashtabula, Columbiana, Mahoning & Trumbull counties

Why You Should Get Vaccinated

A COVID-19 vaccine is a safe and effective way to prevent you from getting COVID-19 and is an important tool to help stop the pandemic. According to the CDC, getting a COVID-19 vaccine has many benefits, including:

  • Wearing masks and social distancing help reduce your chance of getting the virus or spreading it to others, but they are not enough. A vaccine is an added layer of protection that will work with your immune system to fight the virus if you are exposed.
  • All vaccines currently available in the United States have been shown to be highly effective at preventing COVID-19.
  • All vaccines that are still be developed will undergo careful testing and will only be made available if they are shown to make you less likely to get COVID-19.
  • Getting a COVID-19 vaccine may help keep you from getting seriously ill even if you do get COVID-19.
  • Getting vaccinated also protects those around you, including individuals at higher risk for getting very sick from the disease.

Common Vaccine Questions and Answers

What is COVID-19?

It is a new illness spreading around the world. It is also called coronavirus. It is a virus making people very sick. 

What is a COVID-19 vaccine?

A vaccine is a medicine. The COVID-19 vaccine is a shot to help your body not get sick from the COVID-19 virus. 

Why is the COVID-19 vaccine important for older people?

Older people are more likely to get very sick from COVID-19 than younger people. They may have illnesses that make it hard for their body to fight the disease. Older people who get help from others may also be more likely to be in contact with someone who has the virus and could give it to them. 

Are COVID-19 vaccines safe? 

Yes. The vaccines were given to a lot of people as a test to show they are okay for people to use.

The COVID-19 vaccine was made in a very short time. Was it tested enough?

Yes. Scientists worked as a team to make and test the COVID-19 vaccines faster. The tests showed that the vaccines are okay for people to use.

Do I have to get the COVID-19 vaccine?

There is no law that you have to get the vaccine. But, your work or other places may say they want you to have the vaccine before you go there.

Will I get the COVID-19 virus from the COVID-19 vaccine shot?

No. A vaccine will not make you sick with the virus. It will not make you test positive for COVID-19. If you feel bad after your shot, it will not last long.

I had the COVID-19 virus. Should I get the COVID-19 vaccine?

Yes. The vaccine can help people who have already had COVID-19 stay healthy. It can also help their friends and family stay healthy.

Source: The Ohio State University

Facts About the COVID-19 Vaccine

Town Halls

Image is a collage of portraits of five different individuals representing groups of people affected by vaccine misinformation.

Whether you hear myths on social media, at work, or from friends or family, there is a lot of dangerous misinformation out there about COVID-19 vaccines. The truth is that COVID-19 vaccines are safe, effective, and rigorously tested. Ohio’s COVID-19 Vaccine Town Halls are designed to help you sift through the myths and learn where you can find reliable, trustworthy information about COVID-19 vaccines.

You’ve got questions, and these Town Halls can give you answers. Hear from medical experts, community leaders, and public health professionals. 

About the Vaccine

  • Many COVID-19 vaccines are being made. Most require you to get 2 shots. You get the second shot 3 to 4 weeks after you got the first one. The second shot is like a booster shot. You need to get both shots for the vaccine to work.
  • The vaccine is free, though some providers may charge a small fee. Ask about fees before you get a shot. Check with your insurance provider about getting paid back for any fee you have to pay.
  • The vaccine may have some side effects. It can make your arm sore or you might feel tired or have a fever after getting your shot. Ask your doctor about what could happen when you get the COVID-19 vaccine.
  • It is your choice to get the COVID-19 vaccine or not. Consider the benefits:
    • Vaccines boost your immune system so it will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed.
    • Vaccines may stop you from getting very sick if you get the virus. 
    • Getting the vaccine may stop you from giving the virus to someone else.
  • If you have questions about the benefits and risks of the vaccine, talk to your doctor.
  • You should continue to wear a mask and follow social distancing rules after you get the vaccine. Doctors will tell us when it is safe to be in public without a mask.

About Ohio's Vaccine Plan

  • It takes time to make enough vaccines for everybody. Ohio has a plan with a few phases to give the COVID-19 vaccines across the state to those who want to get one. People who are most at risk will get the vaccine first. This includes older adults and people who live or work in group settings, such as nursing homes and assisted living facilities.
  • For now, the vaccine is not for children. Younger and healthy adults might have to wait to get the vaccine. Once more vaccines are made, every person in Ohio will have a choice to get the vaccine if they want to.
  • Vaccines will be sent to hospitals, local health departments, and some pharmacies for them to give vaccines to eligible people who want them during the first phase. Once more vaccines are available, there may be more locations to get the vaccine.

What to Do After You Get Your Shot

After the first dose (Pfizer and Moderna)

You had a COVID-19 vaccine shot. Great! What do you do now?

  1. Make sure you get both shots of your COVID-19 vaccine. You should get a second shot about 3 or 4 weeks after the first. 
  2. Follow directions given to you as follow-up after your vaccine shot. This may mean making time for rest. You may also be asked report the way you feel after you get the vaccine.
  3. Take steps to keep away from germs. Do this even after you have had the vaccine. Everyone needs to do their part to stop the virus from spreading.
    • Cover your mouth and nose with a mask when you are around other people.
    • Wash your hands often.
    • Make sure you have at least 6 feet of space between you and other people whenever you can.
    • See people outdoors instead of indoors.
    • Do not go to places with large crowds.

Visit the CDC website to read more about what to expect after your vaccine shot.

Source: The Ohio State University

Fully vaccinated people

On March 8, 2021, the CDC released recommendations for fully vaccinated people. To be fully vaccinated means that it has been at least two weeks since you received the second dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine or the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. 

People who are fully vaccinated and who do not live or work in a health care or long-term care setting can:

  • Visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing; and
  • Visit with unvaccinated people from a single household who are at low risk for severe COVID-19 disease indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing.

In addition, people who are fully vaccinated do not need to quarantine or be tested after being around someone who has COVID-19, as long as the vaccinated person does not have any symptoms of COVID-19.

Fully vaccinated people should continue to:

  • Be careful in public by wearing a mask and staying at least 6 feet from others;
  • Wear masks, when visiting with people who are not fully vaccinated and are at increased risk for severe COVID-19 disease or who live with someone like that;
  • Wear masks, keep your distance, and follow other safety guidelines when visiting with people from multiple households who are not fully vaccinated;
  • Avoid medium- and large-sized in-person gatherings;
  • Get tested if you experience COVID-19 symptoms;
  • Follow guidance issued by individual employers; and
  • Follow CDC and health department travel requirements and recommendations.

The guidelines are expected to change as more people become vaccinated and other factors change. Check the CDC website for the latest guidance.

Be Alert to COVID-19 Vaccine Scams

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and other federal partners have received complaints of scammers using the public’s interest in COVID-19 vaccines to obtain personally identifiable information and money through various schemes. Recognize the warning signs of a scam, take steps to protect yourself, and know what to do if you become a target.

Warning signs of a potential scam

  • Advertisements or offers for early access to a vaccine upon payment of a deposit or fee;
  • Requests asking you to pay out of pocket to obtain the vaccine or to put your name on a waiting list;
  • Offers to undergo additional medical testing or procedures when obtaining a vaccine;
  • Offers to sell doses of a vaccine in exchange for payment of a deposit or fee;
  • Unsolicited emails, telephone calls, or personal contact from someone claiming to be from a medical office, insurance company, or COVID-19 vaccine center requesting personal and/or medical information to determine your eligibility to get the vaccine or participate in a clinical trial;
  • Claims of FDA approval for a vaccine that cannot be verified;
  • Advertisements for vaccines through social media platforms, email, telephone calls, online, or from unsolicited/unknown sources; or
  • Individuals contacting you in person, by phone, or by email to tell you the government or government officials require you to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

Tips to avoid COVID-19 vaccine-related fraud

  • Visit www.coronavirus.ohio.gov for up-to-date information about authorized vaccine distribution channels and only obtaining a vaccine through such channels.
  • Consult your primary care physician before undergoing any vaccination.
  • Do not share your personal or health information with anyone other than known and trusted medical professionals.
  • Do not share pictures of your COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card online.
  • Check your medical bills and insurance explanation of benefits (EOBs) for any suspicious claims and promptly reporting any errors to your health insurance provider.
  • Follow guidance and recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other trusted medical professionals. 
  • Use safe practices online, such as keeping your operating system and security software up to date, not opening attachments you did not expect, and not responding to unexpected online requests for personal, medical, or financial information. 

Reporting COVID-19 vaccine-related fraud

If you believe you have been the target of COVID-19 fraud, immediately report it to the Ohio Attorney General at 1-800-282-0515 or online at www.ohioprotects.org/file-a-complaint