The COVID-19 vaccine is designed to prevent the COVID-19 disease and is the best hope for ending the pandemic. Mercyhealth is committed to helping vaccinate our communities against COVID-19 and we are collaborating among hospitals, physician offices and local health departments to vaccinate people as soon as possible. All COVID-19 vaccine supply is provided by the Federal government with allocations to each State which is very limited at this time. We ask for your patience as vaccinating our patients and community will take time.
Invitations to schedule a vaccine appointment are sent to patients through MyChart as it is the main way we communication about vaccine availability to our patients. Patients without MyChart may receive their invitation by phone or text message but we strongly encourage you to sign up for MyChart.
Please Be Patient
Please do not call to ask when scheduling invitations are being sent. It is important that we keep our phone lines available for patients who are experiencing urgent healthcare needs. If we can schedule your appointment sooner, we will be in touch as we have a very robust communication system through MyChart, and telephone and text messages for those without MyChart. If you are a Mercyhealth patient, we encourage you to sign up for MyChart as it is the main way we communication about vaccine availability to our patients.
Information about your COVID-19 Vaccine
Mercyhealth continues to vaccinate eligible patients based on age and underlying health conditions. If you’re a Mercyhealth patient, you’ll receive an email when you’re eligible for the vaccine instructing you to log in to your Mercyhealth MyChart account. Once you log in, there will be a welcome notice on the main page instructing you to schedule your COVID-19 vaccine appointment. You will need to click the box to the right that says “Schedule Now.”
If you don’t have a Mercyhealth MyChart account, we recommend you create one. We’ll expand notification through other outreach methods (mail, phone and email) as our vaccine supply allows. We cannot accept walk ins or vaccinate family members outside a given phase at this time.
While things look promising, it is critical that we all take steps to stay healthy and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our communities. You can help us stop the spread and reduce pressure on hospitals by wearing a mask, not gathering with people outside your household, avoid contact with people who are sick, staying six feet from others, avoiding crowds, practicing good hand hygiene, and if you have symptoms, stay home.
Overall COVID-19 Data
COVID-19 FAQ for patients
For a list of questions and answers for patients on the COVID-19 vaccine, please click here.
Quick answers to common questions about COVID-19 vaccines
Should I get vaccinated for COVID-19?
The vaccine will help protect you from getting COVID-19. If you still get infected after you get vaccinated, the vaccine may prevent serious illness. By getting vaccinated, you can also help protect people around you.
Can the vaccine give me COVID-19?
No. None of the COVID-19 vaccines currently authorized for use or in development in the United States use the live virus that causes COVID-19. However, it typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity after vaccination. That means it’s possible you could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after vaccination and get sick.
If I already had COVID-19 and recovered, do I still need to get vaccinated?
Yes. CDC recommends that you get vaccinated even if you have already had COVID-19, because you can catch it more than once. While you may have some short-term antibody protection after recovering from COVID-19, we don’t know how long this protection will last.
Can my child get vaccinated for COVID-19?
More studies need to be conducted before COVID-19 vaccines are recommended for children younger than 16 years old.
Is it safe to get a COVID-19 vaccine if I have an underlying medical condition?
Yes. COVID-19 vaccination is especially important for people with underlying health problems like heart disease, lung disease, diabetes, and obesity. People with these conditions are more likely to get very sick from COVID-19.
Is it better to get natural immunity to COVID-19 rather than immunity from a vaccine?
No. While you may have some short-term antibody protection after recovering from COVID-19, we don’t know how long this protection lasts. Vaccination is the best protection, and it is safe. People who get COVID-19 can have serious illnesses, and some have debilitating symptoms that persist for months
Why do I need two COVID-19 shots?
Currently authorized vaccines, and most vaccines under development, require two doses of vaccine. The first shot helps the immune system recognize the virus, and the second shot strengthens the immune response. You need both to get the best protection.
Will the shot hurt or make me sick?
There may be side effects, but they should go away within a few days. Possible side effects include a sore arm, headache, fever, or body aches. This does not mean you have COVID-19. Side effects are signs that the vaccine is working to build immunity. If they don’t go away in a week, or you have more serious symptoms, call your doctor.
Are there long-term side effects from COVID-19 vaccine?
Because all COVID-19 vaccines are new, it will take more time and more people getting vaccinated to learn about very rare or possible long-term side effects. The good news is, at least 8 weeks’ worth of safety data were gathered in the clinical trials for all the authorized vaccines, and it’s unusual for vaccine side effects to appear more than 8 weeks after vaccination.
How do I know if COVID-19 vaccine is safe?
All COVID-19 vaccines were tested in clinical trials involving tens of thousands of people to make sure they meet safety standards and protect adults of different ages, races, and ethnicities. There were no serious safety concerns. CDC and the FDA will keep monitoring the vaccines to look for safety issues after they are authorized and in use.
How do I report problems or bad reactions after getting a COVID-19 vaccine?
All recipients who receive the vaccine should enroll in v-safe. This is a smartphone tool you can use to tell CDC if you have any side effects after getting a COVID-19 vaccine. If you report serious side effects, someone from CDC will call to follow up. You will be given instructions for how to enroll when you receive a COVID-19 vaccine.
Source: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Parking instructions by site (vaccine available by appointment only)
Wisconsin Residents: DHS Launches Vaccine Newsletter
Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) has launched a weekly newsletter to provide updates to the public on COVID-19 response and vaccine rollout in Wisconsin.
In addition to an update on vaccine eligibility and the number of vaccinations administered in Wisconsin, the weekly newsletter will include key updates from the previous week, as well as COVID-19 resources and links to where Wisconsinites can find more detailed information. Click here to register.
Mercyhealth providers and patients discuss the vaccine