What You Need to Know

UPDATED: 1/14

Safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines can help stop the pandemic. Vaccines help prevent individuals from getting COVID-19, an illness that can lead to hospitalization, long-term effects, or in worst cases, death. If many people get vaccinated once vaccines are widely available, and if everyone continues to follow health recommendations and prevention methods, we will be successful in keeping communities healthy and controlling this virus. 

It could be months until vaccines are available for the general public. Now is the time to learn about the vaccine, ask questions, and understand whether and when a vaccination might be right for you. As we find our way out of the pandemic, keep masking, social distancing, and practicing other prevention behaviors so we can keep ourselves and each other safe and healthy. Vaccines could:  
  • Prevent you from getting COVID-19 and its risks and complications 
  • Reduce the number of people infected by COVID-19 throughout the community  
  • Someday get us back to normal life 
The vaccine could prevent infection, hospitalization, chronic illness, and death. It can also give communities a chance at herd immunity to make person-to-person spread unlikely.  

When can I get the vaccine? 

Currently, supplies of vaccine are being given to healthcare workers, first responders, long-term-care facility residents, and teachers, per the direction of the Utah Department of Health. Following that, people ages 70 and older, then people with chronic illness, other risk groups either by age or condition to be determined, and then the general population will be vaccinated. Most healthy adults should have access to a COVID-19 vaccine between April and July 2021. Find information about access in Utah from local health departments. Also access Idaho’s vaccine plans, and Nevada’s vaccine plans.

Where can I get the vaccine?

If you are in a group that is currently recommended to get the vaccine, go to your local health department website to make an appointment (access the websites for UtahIdaho, and Nevada). If all the appointments are full, keep checking back as more appointments will become available as more vaccine is shipped to the states. 

When COVID-19 vaccines are available to the general public, individuals may be able to access them from local health departments as well as hospital facilities, clinics, select pharmacies, community and public health centers, and physician offices.

What can I do until vaccines are widely distributed?

Support all other prevention methods. Masking, social distancing, and hand hygiene should be followed for vaccinated and non-vaccinated individuals until healthcare guidance changes. We don’t yet know how long vaccines will be effective, so all prevention methods should be followed. 

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COVID-19 Vaccination Support

Intermountain is continually updated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local, state, and national health and infection prevention experts about the safety, effectiveness, availability, and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines.  

The CDC provides clinical guidance on vaccines in the US and determines how people should be prioritized based on risk and need. The Utah Department of Health (UDOH) formed a team including Intermountain leaders to develop a distribution plan based on CDC recommendations. Idaho and Nevada have similar distribution plans and structures. Health departments are estimating all individuals who want COVID-19 vaccines may be able to get them by summer 2021.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are COVID-19 vaccines safe?

Safety is Intermountain’s top priority and requirement for supporting vaccine programs. We are watching reports from the CDC and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) closely, who monitor vaccine safety before, during, and after approval for use. We will only support vaccines that are FDA- authorized or approved.   

Read more about the FDA’s process for authorizing or approving vaccines.
Intermountain Healthcare looks to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and its Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and its National Vaccine Advisory Committee (NVAC), and state departments of health for guidance, prioritization, and timing of vaccines.