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COVID-19 Vaccination Options & FAQs

Vaccination is the best way to avoid serious illness due to COVID-19. MaineHealth recommends that everyone age 6 months and older get vaccinated as soon as possible. If you are eligible for a booster shot but have not yet received one, we encourage you to get one now. Boosters strengthen your immune system and provide an extra layer of protection. Stay up to date to help protect yourself, your family and your community.

Vaccination Scheduling Options:

Please review our vaccination appointment guide before you arrive.

Vaccine Eligibility

Who is eligible for COVID-19 vaccination?

Everyone age 6 months and older is eligible for COVID-19 vaccination.

Adults over the age of 18 are eligible for:

Vaccine eligibility varies by age for kids and teens:

    What is a booster dose and who is eligible?

    Many available vaccines require boosters. Boosters help increase your immune response, which may decline over time. Everyone age 6 months and older can get a COVID-19 booster.

    Learn more about booster eligibility.

    About the Vaccines

    Are the vaccines safe?

    COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. Millions of people in the United States have received COVID-19 vaccines under the most intense safety monitoring in U.S. history. MaineHealth doctors recommend that you get vaccinated for COVID-19 as soon as possible.

    Common Side Effects

    Some people have no side effects. Others have reported common side effects after COVID-19 vaccination, such as:

    • Swelling, redness, and pain at injection site
    • Fever
    • Headache
    • Tiredness
    • Muscle pain
    • Chills
    • Nausea

    More serious side-effects are extremely rare. The risk of serious illness or death from COVID-19 infection is much greater.  Learn more about COVID-19 vaccine safety.

    If people are still being diagnosed with COVID-19, does that mean the vaccines are not effective?

    The vaccines are extremely effective. Studies show they are:

    • 99% effective in preventing deaths
    • 90% effective in preventing hospitalizations
    • 65% - 95% effective in preventing infection

    While some fully-vaccinated people may become infected, they usually have only mild symptoms. Unvaccinated people who become infected are experiencing:

    • More severe illness
    • More hospitalizations
    • Increased death rates

    What if I am pregnant or breast feeding?

    COVID-19 vaccination is recommended for people who are pregnant, breastfeeding, trying to get pregnant now, or might become pregnant in the future. Evidence about the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy has been growing. These data suggest that the benefits of receiving a COVID-19 vaccine outweigh any known or potential risks of vaccination during pregnancy.

    Did you know?

    • There is currently no evidence that any vaccines, including COVID-19 vaccines, cause fertility problems in women or men.
    • Pregnant and recently pregnant people are more likely to get severely ill with COVID-19 compared with non-pregnant people.
    • Getting a COVID-19 vaccine can protect you from severe illness from COVID-19.

    Learn more about COVID-19 vaccination while pregnant or breastfeeding.

    Can I get a flu shot and a COVID-19 shot at the same time?

    Yes, you can get a COVID-19 vaccine and a flu vaccine at the same time. If you are not yet fully vaccinated for COVID-19, do so as soon as you can, and ideally get a flu vaccine by the end of October.

    Learn more about flu vaccination during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Which vaccine brand is better?

    The soonest available vaccine is the best vaccine. All vaccines approved for emergency use in the U.S. have been shown to be very effective at preventing serious illness due to COVID-19.


    If I have already had COVID-19, should I get the vaccine?

    Yes, you should be fully-vaccinated and boosted, regardless of whether you already had COVID-19. Scientists are still studying how long COVID-19 protection lasts after vaccination. After you are fully recovered from your illness, vaccination can help protect you from getting sick again.

    It is thought that people get better protection by being fully vaccinated compared with having had COVID-19. One study showed that unvaccinated people who already had COVID-19 are more than 2 times as likely than fully vaccinated people to get COVID-19 again.

    If you were treated for COVID-19 with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma, you should wait 90 days before getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Talk to your doctor if you are unsure what treatments you received or if you have more questions about getting a COVID-19 vaccine.

    Learn more about the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination.

    How long does it take for the vaccine to become effective?

    People are considered fully vaccinated 2 weeks after completion of an initial vaccine series. However, it is very important to stay up-to-date will all recommended booster doses for your age group.

    Even after you are fully-vaccinated and boosted, it is important to continue practices that help limit the spread of COVID-19. Wear a mask indoors in public if you are at a high-risk for severe illness or, if you are in a high-risk community.

    Learn more about COVID-19 community risk levels.

    Vaccine Access

    What if I live in NH?

    Can I get help with transportation to my vaccine appointment?

    The Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has announced a free transportation option for Maine residents who need a ride to and from a COVID-19 vaccination appointment. Learn more >
    • You must have a vaccination appointment before requesting a ride.
    • Face masks are required.
    • Rides are available for appointments scheduled Monday through Saturday from 7:00 am - 4:00 pm.
    • You must call 1-855-608-5172 at least 48 hours before your scheduled appointment time, to reserve a ride
    If you live in Lincoln County and require transportation to the vaccine clinic in Boothbay Harbor, please contact

    How much does the vaccine cost? Do I need insurance?

    The COVID-19 vaccine is provided at no cost. A fee for administration of the vaccine will be billed to your insurance carrier with no out-of-pocket cost to you. Please bring your insurance card to your appointment. If you are a Medicare or Medicare Advantage patient, please bring your Traditional Medicare ID (the red, white, and blue card) to your appointment.

    How can I get a copy of my COVID-19 vaccination record?

    We will give you a COVID-19 vaccination card at the vaccine clinic, after you are vaccinated. It is important to keep this card in a safe place. Consider taking a picture of it with your mobile device. If you lose it, and need proof of vaccination:

    1. Complete our Authorization to Release Protected Health Information form
    2. Return the completed form via e-mail, fax or mail
    • Email:
    • Fax: 207-761-3092
    • Mail: MaineHealth, Health Information Management Department, 301C US Route One, Scarborough, ME 04074

    Note: You will not receive a new CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card. You will receive a record of your recent immunizations, including the COVID-19 vaccine. This is an accepted record of vaccination status.

    Questions? Call 207-662-2211 Monday – Friday, 7:30 am to 4 pm or email

    Vaccine Resources