How to Get the COVID-19 Vaccine in Vermont

Posted on 05/13/21 by Andy Markowitz, Jessica Ravitz

En español | Who can get vaccinated now?

  • Vermonters age 12 and up
  • Part-time Vermonters, including college students, certain workers and some others
Virus Outbreak Vermont Vaccine

Where can I get vaccinated?

  • Government-run vaccination sites, hospitals and community clinics, with some locations welcoming walk-ins, no appointment necessary. You can use the state health department's website to find a site near you or make an appointment.
  • Certain pharmacies, including all Walmart and Rite-Aid pharmacies and some CVS and Walgreens locations, don't require appointments for vaccinations. But if you'd prefer to schedule your shot in advance, links to pharmacies offering appointments are on the state's COVID-19 website.
  • Vermonters who are Black, Indigenous or people of color can schedule appointments at vaccination clinics focused on their communities in the Burlington, Bennington, Brattleboro and Rutland areas, as well as at pharmacies and state-run clinics.
  • Homebound Vermonters can receive shots through a state partnership with local home health and emergency services. Home care agencies will contact eligible clients to arrange vaccination visits. If you are homebound but are not a client of a home health agency, call 802-863-7240 to request a vaccination appointment.
  • The federal government’s vaccines website, www.vaccines.gov, lets you search for vaccination sites by zip code, with links to appointments. You can use the same tool by texting your zip code to 438829 to find vaccine sites. 

Check the health department’s vaccine page and COVID-19 FAQs for more information. If you don’t have internet access or need help making an online appointment, call the state vaccine call center at 855-722-7878.

AARP recommends that you talk to your doctor about the safety, effectiveness, benefits and risks of the COVID-19 vaccine. Older adults, especially those with underlying medical conditions such as diabetes and heart disease, are at  increased risk for hospitalization and death from COVID-19.

What should I bring to my vaccination appointment?

Some vaccination sites ask for proof of identity or eligibility. Officials recommend that you bring a driver’s license or other state-issued ID that shows your name, age and state residency, and your health insurance card, if you have one. You will not be charged, but the vaccine provider may bill your insurer a fee for administering the vaccine.

If you are prioritized because of an underlying medical condition or based on your work, you may need a note from your doctor, a pay stub or badge, or some other form of proof. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says to wear a mask at your appointment.

How are residents at nursing homes and other long-term care facilities being vaccinated?

Most residents and staff of long-term care facilities in Vermont are being vaccinated through a federal program that contracted with CVS, Walgreens and Kinney Drugs to administer COVID-19 vaccines at free on-site clinics. Apart from a very small number of outstanding clinics, the program is complete.

To ensure long-term care facilities still have access to COVID-19 vaccines — for new residents or staff, or for residents and staff who were initially hesitant to receive the shots — the federal government is continuing to allocate vaccines to pharmacies partnered with long-term care facilities.

Which vaccines require a second shot?

The COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna require two doses. If you get one of these, you’ll need a follow-up dose to be effectively immunized. The recommended second-shot date is three weeks after a first dose of the Pfizer vaccine and four weeks for Moderna’s, but the CDC says an interval of up to six weeks is acceptable.  

At your first vaccination appointment, you should receive a vaccination card with the date of your appointment for a second dose. The state is also encouraging Vermonters to use V-safe, a web tool launched by the CDC that lets people sign up for text message reminders of their second vaccine appointment and report possible side effects.

Johnson & Johnson's vaccine requires just one shot. Federal officials warn that the vaccine has been connected with rare, severe blood clots in a small number of recipients, especially in women age 50 years and younger.

It’s not yet known how long immunity from a coronavirus vaccine lasts and whether it needs to be administered on a regular basis like a flu shot. Visit the CDC's COVID-19 vaccines page for more information.

Do I have to pay for the vaccination? 

You should not have any out-of-pocket cost for getting the vaccine. AARP fought to make sure the federal government is covering the cost of the vaccine itself. Providers can recoup a fee for administering the shot but not from consumers. They would be reimbursed by the patient’s insurance company or the government (in the case of Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries and the uninsured, for example).

Scammers are purporting to offer COVID vaccines and treatments and trying to charge for them. AARP's Fraud Watch Network is tracking the latest scams.

What should I do with my vaccine card?

You should get a small white card at your vaccination appointment with your name, birth date, name of the vaccine you received and the date it was administered. If you receive the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, bring your card when you get your second shot.

You may need your vaccine card for certain kinds of travel or other activities, so keep it in a safe place. You can take a photo of it with your smartphone for your own records. Experts say that posting a photo of your card to social media could make you vulnerable to identity theft. If you lose your card or did not receive one, contact your vaccine provider or your local health department to get a copy.

When will kids be able to get vaccinated? 

Pfizer’s vaccine is authorized for those age 12 and older; the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are authorized for those 18 and older. Both Pfizer and Moderna are researching how their vaccines work in children as young as 6 months. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has said he expects that all kids will likely be eligible by early next year. 

Should I still wear a mask after getting vaccinated?

It takes two weeks to build immunity after the single-dose shot and after the second dose of the two-dose shots. After that, the CDC says, fully vaccinated people can gather indoors and outdoors without wearing a mask or staying 6 feet apart, except where required by state and federal law and local business and workplace requirements. 

The CDC recommends continuing to wear a mask on planes, buses and trains and other shared transport while traveling into, within or out of the United States, and while at transportation hubs like airports and stations.  

This guide, published Jan. 5, was updated on May 13 with information about age eligibility and with the latest guidance from the CDC on mask wearing and social distancing for the fully vaccinated. 

gray divider line

Also of Interest:

This story is provided by AARP Vermont. Visit the AARP Vermont page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

More from AARP in Montpelier

Upcoming AARP Events

View All AARP Events »


Find information about getting a COVID-19 vaccine in your state. CDC information is available at cdc.gov/coronavirus; additional AARP information and resources are at aarp.org/coronavirus. En español, visite aarp.org/elcoronavirus.

AARP Member Card

Join or Renew Today

JOIN FOR JUST $16 A YEAR

  • Immediate access to your member benefits
  • Discounts on travel and everyday savings
  • Subscription to the award-winning AARP The Magazine
  • An ally on the issues that matter most to you in Montpelier
  • Free membership for your spouse or partner
JOIN NOW