PITU Coronavirus Vaccination Plan
In adherence with the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) priority distribution guidelines.
Please review all of the information on this page, and then call the nearest FourPoints Health clinic to schedule your vaccine.
Anticipated Timeline for Vaccine Distribution
- Mid-December: Phase 1a
- Late December-January: Phase 1a-1b
- January-February: Phase 1c
- February-July: Phase 2-3
(very limited doses available)
- Phase 1a Tribal healthcare workers and Tribal members residing in Long-term care facilities
- Phase 1b = all remaining Phase 1a populations, all Tribal members aged ≥75 years and tribal members or tribal staff who are frontline essential workers (e.g., firefighters, police, education sector, food & agriculture, manufacturing, correctional officers, transit workers, grocery store workers, PITU language speakers, culture & tradition keepers, etc)
- Phase 1c = All remaining Phase 1a-b populations, all Tribal members aged ≥55 years, tribal members aged 18–64 years with high-risk medical conditions, and other essential workers not recommended in Phase 1a-b.
(Larger number of doses likely available, but supply may still not meet demand)
- Remainder of phase 1 populations
- All remaining Tribal members (and their households) and other Purchased Referred Care (PRC) eligible AI/AN residing in the PITU service area
- All remaining patients of the Tribe’s FourPoints Health clinics desiring vaccination
(Supply likely to exceed demand) – Shift to routine vaccination strategy
All remaining persons and populations desiring vaccination ages 12 and older
Frequently Asked Questions
When will the vaccine be available?
Very limited doses of the vaccine have already been received from Indian Health Services and are starting to be distributed through the Tribe’s clinics according to the Tribe’s Vaccination Plan and Priorities in Phase 1a. Please refer to the Anticipated Timeline For Vaccination Distribution on the Tribe’s Vaccination Plan and Priorities for estimated availability by phase.
How was this plan developed?
The plan was developed following the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) priority distribution guidelines. The plan will be updated as necessary following updated guidance from the CDC and ACIP.
Who is the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP)?
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) comprises medical and public health experts who develop recommendations on the use of vaccines in the civilian population of the United States. The recommendations stand as public health guidance for safe use of vaccines and related biological products. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) provides advice and guidance to the Director of the CDC regarding use of vaccines and related agents for control of vaccine-preventable diseases in the civilian population of the United States. Recommendations made by the ACIP are reviewed by the CDC Director and, if adopted, are published as official CDC/HHS recommendations in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR).
Is the vaccine available through our tribal clinics (FourPoints Health) to anyone as long as they are a patient? Or do tribal members have priority?
Tribal members have priority over non-tribal as shown on the Tribe’s Vaccination Plan and Priorities. Tribal members and their households fall into Phase 1b through Phase 2. Non-tribal patients and other community members fall into priority Phases 2 through 3.
I would like to receive the vaccine, what should I do? How do I get it?
If you would like to be added to the list to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, please call your local FourPoints Health clinic. If you are in the current priority phase, we may be able to get you scheduled right away. If not, you will be added to the appropriate priority list and we will contact you when it is time for your vaccine.
If a tribal member is not an elder but lives with an elder (I.e. parent, grandparent, in-law), what is the protocol or priority for them?
They would fall into whichever phase or priority fits them, regardless of who they live with (based on the current vaccine priority guidance).
Does the individual qualify for a vaccine if they are not a PITU tribal member, but live in the same household as a member?
Yes, everyone qualifies for a vaccine. They would be prioritized based on the Tribe’s Vaccination Plan and Priorities, regardless of who they live with.
If I (a Tribal member) get a vaccine, will my spouse/partner (who is not a Tribal member) be able to receive the vaccine at the same time?
They would be prioritized based on the Tribe’s Vaccination Plan and Priorities, regardless of who they live with or are married to. So, they would not likely be able to receive the vaccination at the same time as you unless you chose to wait and be vaccinated together.
If an elderly parent lives close by but is enrolled in another tribe, can they receive the vaccine?
Yes, anyone can receive a vaccine if they want it. However, they would need to register as a patient of FourPoints Health if they are not already registered (to allow us to legally provide medical care) and we would follow the same phased priorities outlined in the Tribe’s Vaccination Plan and Priorities – likely phase 1c or phase 2.
If a tribal member lives outside of the service area but is willing to travel to our service area to receive the vaccine, can they receive the vaccine at PITU/FourPoints Health?
Yes, anyone can receive a vaccine if they want it. However, they would need to register as a patient of FourPoints Health if they are not already registered (to allow us to legally provide medical care) and we would follow the same phased priorities outlined in the Tribe’s Vaccination Plan and Priorities.
Is there a cost or fee for the vaccine?
The vaccine itself is free. There may be a small fee (similar to the flu vaccine) for administering the vaccine for those who are not PITU tribal members or other PRC eligible AI/AN.
What is the process for getting the vaccine?
The process is pretty similar to most other vaccines. You will schedule an appointment with the clinic when it is appropriate for you to do so (based on the Tribe’s Vaccination Plan and Priorities). When it is time for your vaccine appointment, you will check in at the clinic as you normally would. Then you will be asked a short list of questions to ensure you are healthy enough and appropriate for the vaccine. Next, you will receive the injection (a simple shot in the arm) and then observed for 15-30 minutes to ensure there are not adverse reactions. That’s it.
Is the vaccine safe? Are there side effects?
So far, none of the vaccine trials have reported any serious safety concerns. Trials for the first two vaccines — from Pfizer and Moderna — have had fully independent safety monitoring boards, and safety data are continuously reviewed by the FDA and expert panels. After a vaccine is authorized or approved for use, many vaccine safety monitoring systems watch for adverse events (possible side effects). This continued monitoring can pick up on adverse events that may not have been seen in clinical trials. If an unexpected adverse event is seen, experts quickly study it further to assess whether it is a true safety concern. (source https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/safety.html).
Reported side effects tend to be mild. In addition to a sore arm, people can experience a fever and some flu-like symptoms — fatigue, aches, chills, headache. They last about a day, sometimes bad enough that recipients miss work, and are more common after the second dose and in younger people. These reactions are a sign that the immune system is revving up.
I had COVID and have recovered. Should I get the vaccine?
There is not enough information currently available to say if or for how long after infection someone is protected from getting COVID-19 again; this is called natural immunity. Early evidence suggests natural immunity from COVID-19 may not last very long, but more studies are needed to better understand this. Until we have a vaccine available and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices makes recommendations to CDC on how to best use COVID-19 vaccines, CDC cannot comment on whether people who had COVID-19 should get a COVID-19 vaccine. (source https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/faq.html).
Where can I get more information and answers to other questions I may have about the vaccine?
Still have questions? Call your nearest FourPoints Health clinic.