Sansum Clinic’s current vaccine supply and future allocation is managed by the state, and our distribution plan is under the specific direction of the Santa Barbara Public Health Department. We ask for your patience as we adhere to this direction to offer the vaccine to everyone as quickly as possible. See the Public Health Department’s distribution guidelines.
We are committed to keeping you up-to-date about how to get vaccinated, so please continue to check this website for updates on vaccine availability and eligibility for Sansum Clinic patients.
On January 13, California announced that those over 65 years old are eligible to receive a vaccine. Due to the limited supply of vaccine available and the huge demand, we are breaking the eligible age ranges into smaller groups to accommodate our patient population.
Due to our limited supply of vaccine, we cannot vaccinate all patients in this age bracket immediately, but we are working as quickly as possible.
As vaccine becomes available for this group, you will be invited to schedule an appointment for the first dose of the vaccine via MyChart. If you do not have a MyChart account, you will receive a letter in the mail when you are able to schedule your vaccine. If you are not signed up for MyChart, we strongly suggest that you sign up today. After you receive your first dose of the vaccine, you will be prompted to return to MyChart to schedule your second dose.
We will continue to update patients on which age groups are eligible for vaccination as supply and appointment availability allows.
Please check your MyChart account to make sure your email address and other contact information is correct. If you do not have an account, please follow the instructions on this page to sign up now, or call the MyChart Help Desk at (805) 898-3333.
Many patients are calling with the questions below. Please review this information and if you have any additional questions, send a MyChart message to your primary care provider.
As of now, two pharmaceutical companies, Pfizer and Moderna, have received emergency use authorization of their mRNA COVID-19 vaccines. Both vaccines are judiciously being sent out to acute care hospitals and large medical clinics in very limited dosages in order to vaccinate direct health care workers in the acute care setting.
Sansum Clinic is administering the Moderna vaccination at this time.
While the vaccine is becoming available slowly, supplies are expected to increase over time so that most adults in the United States could potentially be vaccinated by late 2021. However, a COVID-19 vaccine may not be available for young children until more studies are completed. Click here to see who is currently eligible for a vaccine at Sansum Clinic.
While we have been able to vaccinate non-Sansum Clinic community healthcare workers over the past few weeks, we have now unfortunately reached capacity for vaccinating this population to limited vaccine supply. Any healthcare worker who received their first dose at Sansum Clinic will also be given the opportunity to schedule their second dose with us, but we are not able to open to any new community healthcare workers at this time. We have been informed that the Santa Barbara Public Health Department will continue to vaccinate non-Sansum Clinic community healthcare workers, though, so they can be contacted for more information. Thank you for your understanding, and we will be in touch if our own ability to vaccinate healthcare workers in the community changes.
This is a uniquely complex, community-wide vaccination campaign that requires an unprecedented level of partnership and collaboration, especially as initial supplies remain low.
We are working closely with our local, state and other partners to prioritize frontline healthcare workers who are most at risk, followed by those who are most vulnerable to the severe effects of COVID-19. According to CDC and state guidelines, hospitals and health systems are advised to prioritize frontline team members.
At the same time, we know many of our local county leaders have robust plans in place to prioritize vulnerable patients. Additionally, there are several retail organizations who are tasked in this collaborative effort as well.
Once supplies increase, we are expected to be able to begin offering to our patients as well, likely March or April, but if we are fortunate enough to get more vaccine sooner and are directed by the public health department to vaccinate other priority groups, after phase I priority groups have been vaccinated, we will do so.
We are following Public Health Department guidelines and will continue to communicate as we open our vaccine clinics up to more eligible age groups, depending on vaccine supply and appointment availability. When you become eligible to schedule a vaccine, you will be notified by email or mail (if you are not on MyChart) to schedule your vaccine. Click here to see who is currently eligible for a vaccine at Sansum Clinic. It is important to understand that we are being provided limited supply of vaccine, so even at the point at which the general patient population is eligible for vaccine, we may not have enough supply for everyone all at once. MyChart will be one of the easiest ways to schedule a COVID-19 vaccination once the vaccine is available on a wider basis. If you do not have an account, please sign up today to receive updates on COVID-19 in your email.
You do not need an order from your healthcare provider to get a vaccination when you become eligible to schedule a vaccine. Due to the limited supply of vaccine available, we are following the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department’s guidelines to vaccinate patients based on age. You will be notified by email or mail (if you are not on MyChart) to schedule your vaccine when you become eligible.
Right now, we are only providing vaccination during our designated hours. If you are eligible now (Click here to see who is currently eligible for a vaccine at Sansum Clinic), you will be notified by email or mail (if you are not on MyChart) to schedule a vaccination during our COVID-19 vaccination clinic hours. While our goal is to eventually be able to provide in-office vaccinations in conjunction with other appointments, we are currently only offering COVID-19 vaccinations during our designated vaccine clinic hours.
We are following Public Health Department guidelines and will continue to communicate as we open our vaccine clinics up to more eligible age groups, depending on vaccine supply and appointment availability. It is important to understand that we are being provided limited supply of vaccine, so even at the point at which the general patient population is eligible for vaccine, we may not have enough supply for everyone all at once. Click here to see who is currently eligible for a vaccine at Sansum Clinic. MyChart will be on the easiest ways to schedule a COVID-19 vaccination once the vaccine is available on a wider basis. If you do not have an account, please sign up today to receive updates on COVID-19 in your email.
There continues to be a limited supply of vaccine available, so we are relying on the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department to guide the process to ensure we are able to vaccinate as many people as possible, in the most appropriate order, based on the risk-level of exposure to COVID-19. Unfortunately, just because certain tiers are eligible to receive a vaccine, that does not mean we have that amount of vaccine available to use at this moment; but we are hoping to start receiving larger numbers of doses soon, since we know most people are eager to get vaccinated. Click here to see who is currently eligible for a vaccine at Sansum Clinic. We will continue to communicate about which eligible age groups of patients we can vaccinate as vaccine supply and appointment availability allows.
MyChart will be the easiest way to be notified and scheduled for the vaccine, once it is available on a wider basis. If you don’t have a MyChart account, please sign up today. It is expected that the availability of the vaccine will increase over time and there should be sufficient supply for all adults to get vaccinated later in 2021.
At this stage, a Sansum Clinic patient is someone who has had a face to face or Telehealth visit with a medical provider (MD, OD, nurse practitioner, physician assistant) in the last 18 months for a primary care or specialty care appointment (not including Urgent Care).
This is a community-wide effort. You can also receive your vaccine through Cottage Health, Santa Barbara County Public Health Department, Lompoc Valley Medical Center and Marian Regional Medical Center, as well as some pharmacies and other health care facilities may also have limited supplies. Please contact them directly.
We are encouraging people to get either the Moderna vaccine or the Pfizer vaccine wherever it is available, and as soon as it is available to you. There is no preference of one vaccine formulation over another but remember that the second dose of which ever vaccine you receive must be from the same manufacturer, and preferably from the same provider (i.e. dose 1 and 2 both received at the same medical facility and/or pharmacy).
The vaccine itself is provided for free but Sansum Clinic will bill for vaccine administration, in accordance with guidelines from Medicare and most other insurance carriers. Patients will not be held responsible for any administration fees not covered by their insurance.
As soon as you receive your first dose you will receive a notification via MyChart that you are eligible to schedule your second dose. This is designed to ensure people have the required amount of time between doses. Be sure to be signed up for MyChart so you get the reminder to schedule the second dose. If you are not on MyChart we will notify you by text or mail. You may also have an opportunity to schedule your second dose when you are on site to receive your dose.
These vaccines are mRNA vaccines, which is a new type of vaccine that contains genetic material (messenger RNA) from the virus that causes COVID-19 and gives our cells instructions for how to make a harmless “spike protein,” a protein that is on the surface of the virus and is unique to the virus.
Our bodies recognize that the protein is “foreign” and should not be there and mounts an immune response by building up T-lymphocytes and B-lymphocytes (and generates antibodies) that will remember how to fight the virus that causes COVID-19 if we are exposed to and infected with the virus in the future.
COVID-19 can cause severe medical complications and lead to death in some people. There is no way to know how COVID-19 will affect you. If you get COVID-19, you could spread the disease to family, friends and others around you. Getting a COVID-19 vaccine can help protect you by creating an antibody response in your body without your having to become sick with COVID-19.
All COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the US (Pfizer and Moderna) have been shown to be highly effective at preventing COVID-19 and may also help keep you from getting seriously ill even if you do get COVID-19. Getting vaccinated may also protect people around you, particularly people at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19. Experts continue to conduct more studies about the effect of COVID-19 vaccination on severity of illness from COVID-19, as well as its ability to keep people from spreading the virus that causes COVID-19.
No. These vaccines do not contain the actual virus and cannot cause COVID-19 illness.
The Pfizer vaccine is a two-dose regimen with the second dose administered at least 21 days after the first. Nearly all COVID-19 vaccines being studied in the United States require two shots.
The first shot primes the immune system, helping it recognize the virus, and the second shot strengthens (boosts) the immune response.
Anyone who gets vaccinated with one formulation must stay with that vaccine formulation for the second dose (e.g., Pfizer vaccine for the first dose must also be used for the second dose-there is no interchanging of formulations).
The Moderna vaccine second dose must be 28 days after the initial dose.
The need for and timing of booster doses for mRNA COVID-19vaccines (beyond the second dose) has not been established. No additional doses beyond the two-dose primary series are recommended at this time.
We understand that this accelerated timeline is unprecedented and has raised concerns for some people that safety may be sacrificed in favor of speed. However, as with all vaccines, safety is paramount.
COVID-19 vaccines are tested in large clinical trials to make sure they meet efficacy and safety standards. With the Pfizer vaccine,44,000 people age 16 and older were vaccinated and there were no safety concerns identified that would preclude the vaccines use. Many people were recruited to participate in these trials to see how the vaccine offers protection to people of different ages, races, and ethnicities, as well as those with different medical conditions.
The Pfizer vaccine was reported to be 95 % effective and the Moderna vaccine was reported to be 94.5%effective, after completing the two dose series.
The Food and DrugAdministration (FDA) carefully reviews all safety data from the clinical trials and authorizes emergency vaccine use only when the expected benefits outweigh potential risks. Then the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) reviews all safety data before recommending any COVID-19 vaccine for use. However, given the newness of the disease and the rapidity of vaccine development, it does take time, and more people getting vaccinated before we learn about very rare or long-term side effects. That is why safety monitoring will continue.
CDC has an independent group of experts that reviews all the safety data as it comes in and provides regular safety updates. If a safety issue is detected, immediate action will take place to determine if the issue is related to the COVID-19 vaccine and determine the best course of action.
It comes down to when production begins. Normally, production starts after a pharmaceutical company completes the development stage, which includes rigorous testing for safety and effectiveness, and a series of reviews and approvals by the FDA and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) amongst others.
In the case of COVID-19 vaccines, the federal government invested taxpayer dollars to encourage pharmaceutical companies to start production before the development stage completed.
The vaccines are still going through the same rigorous testing for safety and effectiveness, review and approval process.
Most people do not have serious problems after being vaccinated. However, your arm may be sore, red, or warm to the touch. These symptoms usually go away on their own within a few days. Some people report getting a headache, muscle aches or fever when getting the vaccine, particularly the second dose.
These side effects are a sign that the immune system is doing exactly what it is supposed to do by building up protection to disease by mounting an antibody response.
Read What to Expect After Getting Your COVID-19 Vaccine fact sheet for more information.
Both this disease and the vaccine are new. We don’t know how long protection lasts for those who get infected or those who are vaccinated. What we do know is that COVID-19 has caused very serious illness and death for a lot of people.
If you get COVID-19, you also risk giving it to loved ones who may get very sick. Getting a COVID-19 vaccine is a safer choice. But further information will become public over time from ongoing clinical trials.
In comparison, immunity to two similar coronaviruses, SARS and MERS, lasted at least 3 years.
The current vaccines under FDA review appear to provide significant protection against COVID-19 but they do not offer 100% protection. In fact, there is no vaccine which provides 100% protection.
Preliminary data suggests the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines offer 95% protection against infection.
You need to have both doses to achieve the highest level of protection. Additionally, it typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity after vaccination. That means it’s possible a person could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after vaccination.
There is currently no data that suggests having an underlying health condition is a reason to avoid getting the vaccine. In fact, those with an underlying illness or health conditions like diabetes, heart disease or obesity, are at an increased risk of developing severe side effects or hospitalization due to COVID-19.
If you have any condition which weakens your immune system, you may not have protection against COVID-19 infection. However, it is safe to receive the vaccine if you are immunocompromised.
For instance, if you are infected with HIV, are on immunosuppressive medication, or a transplant recipient there are no safety concerns but you may not get as strong a protective response. You should address your individual concerns with your primary medical provider.
Vaccines can be taken by people with weakened immunity like HIV patients or other immunosuppressed conditions. They may not get the same effective response as someone without immune compromise.
There is no evidence that the vaccine could affect fertility.
The vaccine mimics infection with the virus that causes COVID-19. The vaccine targets a single protein of the virus, called the spike protein. The vaccine does not contain live virus.
Taking into account both the risks and benefits of our patients receiving one of the two vaccines, based on our current knowledge, Sansum OB/GYN department supports the recommendations of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), Society for maternal Fetal medicine (SMFM), and American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), that all patients planning to conceive, currently pregnant or who are lactating have access to the vaccine. We recommend that you discuss your personal situation, including vaccine availability and your risk of COVID-19, directly with your OB/GYN provider so that they can help you make the best decision for you.
At this time, the vaccine is not recommended for children younger than 16 years of age. This is because researchers do not know enough about how the vaccine can affect children. The vaccine may not be recommended to those with certain health conditions. If you’ve ever had an immediate allergic reaction to any ingredient in a COVID-19 vaccine, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends not getting that specific vaccine. Also, people who are allergic to polysorbate should not get an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine.
If you have an immediate allergic reaction after getting the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, don’t get the second dose. Talk to your health care provider if you have questions about receiving the vaccine.
We recommend thatyou delay getting vaccinated for 90 days after most recent positive test result. There is a concern that you may have a strongerreaction to the vaccine if you get vaccinated soon after having had COVID,because your immune system is likely already “primed” as a result of thenatural infection, and adding vaccine on top of that could result in a morevigorous immune response (e.g., potentially more side effects). Additionally, current evidence suggests thatreinfection with the virus that causes COVID-19 is uncommon in the 90 daysafter initial infection due to the natural immunity that you likely now have asa result of making antibodies to the virus on your own.
Yes. Data from clinical trials indicate that mRNA COVID-19 vaccines are safe in persons with evidence of a prior SARS-CoV-2 infection.
Vaccination should be offered to persons regardless of history of prior symptomatic or asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection. Viral testing to assess for acute SARS-CoV-2 infection or serologic testing to assess for prior infection solely for the purposes of vaccine decision-making is not recommended.
While there is otherwise no recommended minimum interval between infection and vaccination, current evidence suggests that reinfection is uncommon in the 90 days after initial infection. As a result, persons with documented acute SARS-CoV-2 infection in the preceding 90 days can delay vaccination until near the end of this period, if desired.
If you test positive for COVID-19 in between your first and second dose of vaccine, we recommend you wait 60-90 days before getting the second dose for the reasons outlined above.
If you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, even if you feel well now, if is possible that you are also infected. It can take 2-14 days to show symptoms, so it may take up to 14 days to know if you are infected or not. It’s important to complete the quarantine period before coming in for a vaccine. Please read and follow the Home Quarantine Guidance for Close Contacts to COVID-19.
If you have had COVID and received either convalescent plasma or Monoclonal antibodies, you should not receive vaccine for 90 days as these drugs may interfere with the effectiveness of the vaccine.
If you have side effects after vaccination this does not mean you are in any way contagious to your family or community. You should continue to follow all safety measures like mask-wearing, hand-washing etc., just as you have been doing.
If you have ahistory of severe allergic reactions not related to vaccines or injectablemedications, you may still get a COVID-19 vaccine, and you should bemonitored for 30 minutes after getting the vaccine (compared to the standard 15minutes for someone without a history of allergic reaction). If you’ve had an immediate allergic reactionto other vaccines or injectable medications, ask your doctor if you should geta COVID-19 vaccine. If you’ve ever had an immediate allergic reactionto any ingredient in a COVID-19 vaccine, the Centers for DiseaseControl and Prevention recommends not getting that specific vaccine. Also,people who are allergic to polysorbate should not get an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine.
If you have animmediate allergic reaction after getting the first dose ofa COVID-19 vaccine, don’t get the second dose. This guidance pertains to both the Pfizer andModerna vaccine. If you experience an immediate allergic reaction to either vaccine,you should not get a second dose of either manufacturer’s vaccine.
Given the lack of data on the safety and efficacy of mRNA COVID-19 vaccines administered simultaneously with other vaccines, the vaccine series should be administered alone, with a minimum interval of 14 days before or after administration with any other vaccine. If mRNA COVID-19 vaccines are inadvertently administered within 14 days of another vaccine, doses do not need to be repeated for either vaccine.
For vaccinated persons who subsequently develop COVID-19, prior receipt of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine should not affect treatment decisions (including use of monoclonal antibodies, convalescent plasma, antiviral treatment, or corticosteroid administration) or timing of such treatments.
Vaccination of persons with known current SARS-CoV-2 infection should be deferred until the person has recovered from the acute illness (if the person had symptoms) and criteria have been met for them to discontinue isolation.
This recommendation applies to persons who develop SARS-CoV-2 infection before receiving any vaccine doses as well as those who develop SARS-CoV-2 infection after the first dose but before receipt of the second dose.
Yes. While experts learn more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide under real-life conditions, it will be important for everyone to continue using all the tools available to us to help stop this pandemic, like covering your mouth and nose with a mask, washing hands often, and staying at least 6 feet away from others. Together, COVID-19 vaccination and following the Public Health Department and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidance for how to protect yourself and others will offer the best protection from getting and spreading COVID-19. Experts need to understand more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide before deciding to change recommendations on steps everyone should take to slow the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19. Other factors, including how many people get vaccinated and how the virus is spreading in communities, will also affect this decision.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends following these precautions for avoiding infection with the COVID-19 virus:
COVID-19 mRNA vaccine can cause mild sideeffects after the first or second dose, including:
Individuals will be monitored for 15 minutes after getting a COVID-19 vaccine to see if they have an immediate reaction. Most side effects happen within the first three days after vaccination and typically last only one to two days.
See the What to Expect After Getting Your COVID-19 Vaccine fact sheet, which we are handing out to individuals who get vaccinated (along with the Moderna EUA Fact Sheet) which outlines the potential side effects and ways to manage them. Also, it outlines how people can log onto the CDC’s vaccine safety system which provides daily health check-ins via text after getting vaccinated and also provides a reminder for the second dose.
The COVID-19vaccine may cause side effects similar to signs and symptoms of COVID-19.If a person has been exposed to COVID-19 and they develop symptoms more than three days after getting vaccinated or the symptoms last more than two days, they should self-isolate and get tested for COVID-19.
The CDC recommends an observation period following vaccination with mRNA COVID-19 vaccines.
Persons with a history of an immediate allergic reaction of any severity to a vaccine or injectable therapy and persons with a history of anaphylaxis due to any cause should be observed for 30 minutes. All other persons should be observed for 15 minutes.
Researchers believe current COVID-19 vaccines will likely protect against this variant.
According to the CDC, the virus would likely need to accumulate multiple mutations in the spike protein to evade immunity induced by vaccines or by natural infection but this will be monitored closely as more people get vaccinated and vaccine efficacy and duration is determined.