Frequently Asked Questions Regarding COVID-19 Vaccinations in Orange County
On Tuesday, December 29, 2020, the Florida Department of Health in Orange County began vaccinating individuals who are 65+ years old. Orange County Government is following the state’s allocation plan based on a phased approach while the vaccine doses are in limited supply. Residents can say informed about vaccine updates by visiting ocfl.net/Vaccine.
Frequently Asked Questions last updated on 2/18/2021.
Where can I get a COVID-19 vaccine?
There are various vaccine site options listed at ocfl.net/vaccine, including at the Department of Health in Orange County’s vaccination site at the Orange County Convention Center. In addition, hospitals are administering COVID-19 vaccines to health care workers with direct patient contact, including health care workers in the community. Residents with pre-existing conditions are encouraged to talk to their primary care provider for options. Hospitals and County Health Departments also are vaccinating individuals 65 years of age and older. Additionally, hospital providers may vaccinate individuals who they deem to be extremely vulnerable to COVID-19.
How is the Florida Department of Health in Orange County and Orange County Government determining who receives the vaccine?
The eligibility for vaccination is determined by the State of Florida. The Department of Health in Orange County and Orange County Government are administering vaccines in accordance with the state’s priority list and allocation plan. The state’s allocation plan is based on a phased approach while the vaccine doses are in limited supply. Currently, County Health Departments are vaccinating individuals 65+ years old.
Do I need to be a resident of Florida to receive the COVID-19 vaccine?
State Surgeon General Scott Rivkees issued a Public Health Advisory on January 21 prioritizing vaccines for residents of the State of Florida or individuals in Florida for the purpose of providing health care services involving direct contact with patients.
To prove residency (full-time or part-time) a resident must provide a copy of his or her valid Florida driver license or a copy of a valid Florida identification card.
Seasonal residents may provide a copy of two of the following the show proof of residential address:
- A deed, mortgage, monthly mortgage statement, mortgage payment booklet or residential rental or lease agreement.
- One proof of residential address from the season resident’s parent, step-parent or legal guardian or other person with whom the seasonal resident resides and a statement from the person with whom the seasonal resident resides stating that the seasonal resident does reside with him or her.
- A utility hookup or work order dated within 60 days before registration.
- A utility bill, not more than 2 months old.
- Mail from a financial institution, including checking, savings, or investment account statements, not more than 2 months old.
- Mail from a federal, state, county, or municipal government agency, not more than 2 months old.
Do I have to be an Orange County resident to schedule an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccination?
No. However, the Florida Department of Health is currently vaccinating individuals 65+ years old, and you must be a full-time or part-time Florida resident. Those who wish to be vaccinated must schedule an appointment and have a valid photo I.D. No walk-ups will be accepted. For more information about the vaccine in Orange County, visit ocfl.net/vaccine.
Is an I.D. required to be vaccinated?
Yes. Individuals will be asked to present a valid driver’s license or photo I.D. that verifies the name and date of birth that matches the appointment information before receiving a vaccination.
I am younger than 65 years old but have an underlying health condition. Do I qualify for this current round of the vaccine?
The Florida Department of Health in Orange County and Orange County Government are administering vaccines in accordance with the state’s priority list and allocation plan, which is based on a phased approach while the vaccine doses are in limited supply. Individuals younger than 65 years old are not identified as a priority group at this time. As more vaccines become available, the state will determine the next phased approach for vaccinations.
Scheduling an Appointment
If I qualify to receive a vaccine, how do I schedule an appointment?
Individuals who qualify to receive a vaccine may visit ocfl.net/Vaccine or book directly by visiting PatientPortalFL.com to make an account and schedule an appointment.
Do I have to create an account with CDR Maguire to schedule a vaccination appointment?
Yes. You will have to create an account to schedule a vaccination appointment. It is important to know that if you already created an account with CDR Maguire to receive your COVID-19 test results, you will not have to re-create a separate account — simply log in with the same email and password.
I received a bar code after I made my account. Am I scheduled for a vaccine appointment?
No. A “rectangular bar code” indicates your account was successfully made. You will have to go in and schedule an appointment time. If you successfully schedule an appointment, you will receive a confirmation screen with a “square QR code” that can be printed or screenshot.
How do I know if I successfully scheduled a vaccine appointment?
If you successfully scheduled an appointment, you will receive a confirmation screen with a “square QR code” that can be printed or screenshot.
What about seniors who have no internet access to schedule an appointment?
Individuals who do not have access to the internet can schedule an appointment by using a computer at a participating Orange County Community Center – Holden Heights, Pine Hills, East Orange and Taft (hours 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday). Residents can also dial 844-770-8548 to book an appointment over the phone.
How do I schedule an appointment for the second vaccination?
Your second appointment will either be scheduled online when you make your first appointment or in person after receiving your first vaccination at the site. Your second dose will be the same vaccine type/brand (Moderna or Pfizer) as your first dose.
When do I get my second dose? What is the CDC’s guidance on the time span recommendations for the second dose?
Moderna recommends the second dose at 28 days. Pfizer recommends the second dose at 21 days.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), you should not be scheduled to receive the second dose earlier than recommended (i.e., 3 weeks [Pfizer-BioNTech] or 1 month [Moderna]).
However, second doses administered within a grace period of 4 days earlier than the recommended date for the second dose are still considered valid. Doses inadvertently administered earlier than the grace period do not need to be repeated.
In other words, the second dosage is needed but the timing does not have to be precise to the day of recommendation. However, the authorized time schedule should be followed within the recommended guidelines.
CDC’s guidance allows the second dose administered up to 6 weeks (42 days) after the first if it is not feasible to adhere to the recommended interval. Therefore, if the second dose is administered >3 weeks after the first Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine dose or >1 month after the first Moderna vaccine dose, there is no need to restart the series. Vaccine administration errors should be reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System.
For additional information, visit the CDC’s webpage on vaccination recommendations and timing.
I am having trouble booking my appointment online. Who can I contact?
Individuals experiencing issues with booking an appointment online can dial 844-770-8548 or email email@example.com.
How do I cancel or change my appointment?
Vaccination appointments are subject to availability. Those who would like to cancel or change their scheduled appointment may log in to PatientPortalFL.com and make changes. Individuals experiencing issues with canceling/changing an appointment online can dial 844-770-8548 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am a veteran. Where can I schedule an appointment to get a vaccine?
Orlando VA Healthcare System has a limited supply of COVID-19 vaccines but offers vaccines to enrolled veterans 75+ years old who primarily receive their care at the Orlando VA Medical Center or Lake Baldwin VA Medical Center. Eligible veterans can schedule an appointment by calling 407-631-0499. Veterans may also schedule an appointment – subject to availability – by visiting PatientPortalFL.com.
Drive-Thru Vaccination Site
Where are vaccines being administered? Is it a drive-thru location, or will I need to get out of my vehicle?
Drive-thru vaccinations are currently being administered at the Orange County Convention Center. You will not have to get out of your vehicle.
Both COVID-19 vaccinations and testing are taking place at the Orange County Convention Center. Where exactly are each of these happening?
- Orange County Convention Center COVID-19 vaccination site: North Concourse – 9400 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819
- State Regional COVID-19 testing site at the Convention Center: Destination Parkway Garage – 5980 Destination Pkwy, Orlando, FL 32819
Are there restrooms in the vehicle waiting line?
Yes. Portable toilets and washing stations are located in the waiting line, as well as in the observation area after vaccinations are administered.
How do I know if I am in the correct line for vaccinations?
The vaccines are currently being offered at the Orange County Convention Center’s North Concourse. You will be asked to follow directional signage leading along the route to the North Concourse. Florida Department of Health staff are located at the front of the vehicle wait line to properly confirm you are there for your scheduled vaccinations.
How early do I have to show up for my appointment?
You should show up no more than 30 minutes prior to your confirmed appointment slot. Residents who arrive earlier will be asked to wait in order to accommodate other pre-scheduled appointments. It is recommended to arrive at the vaccination site with a full tank of gas, water, a snack and any medication if needed, as wait times may be long.
What do I need to provide staff to show I have a vaccination appointment?
You will be asked to present a valid driver’s license or photo I.D. that verifies your name and date of birth, as well as your “square QR code” that matches your appointment information before receiving a vaccination.
Is there an observation period after I receive the vaccine?
Yes. Everyone who receives a vaccination will drive through an observation area monitored by Florida Department of Health staff and will be monitored for approximately 15-30 minutes for side effects.
If I have an appointment booked and do not have transportation, what are my options? Seniors who are unable to find transportation to the Orange County Convention Center vaccination site may be able to qualify for a free ride, courtesy of LYNX. You must be 65+ and have already obtained an appointment for a vaccine at the Orange County Convention vaccination site.
If you have transportation challenges, call the County’s helpline at 311 (or 407-836-3111 if out of County) for details and coordination. For more information, visit Orange County’s newsroom. Scheduling transportation for appointments needs to be made 48 hours in advance of your appointment.
If you are disabled and need help with transportation, contact the Transportation Disadvantage Program or the ADA Paratransit program through LYNX. All the prerequisites and requirements for program eligibility are on the GoLynx website. You can also contact LYNX at 407-841-LYNX (5969) or at email@example.com.
Are drive-ups/walk-ins accepted?
No. An appointment is required in order to receive a vaccination. Individuals who visit the site without an appointment will be turned away.
Do I still have to socially distance and wear a mask after receiving the vaccine?
Yes. There is currently a local Executive Order requiring face coverings in effect in Orange County. It is important for everyone to continue using all the tools available to help stop the spread of the virus. Together, a COVID-19 vaccination and the recommendations for how to protect yourself and others will offer the best protection from getting and spreading COVID-19.
What vaccine is being administered through the Department of Health in Orange County and Orange County Government?
Both the Moderna and Pfizer vaccine have been delivered to Orange County. Once you have received your first vaccination, you will be provided with a COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card with the type of vaccine that was administered to you.
What are the side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine?
If you experience a severe allergic reaction, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest hospital. Severe allergic reactions include difficulty breathing, swelling of your face and throat, elevated heart heartbeat, development of a rash all over your body, dizziness and weakness. General side effects that have been reported include injection site tenderness, fatigue, headache, muscle pain, joint pain, chills, nausea, vomiting and fever.
What if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, discuss your vaccination options with your healthcare provider.
Will vaccine distribution be available in others areas of Orange County?
There are future plans for distribution of the vaccine at other locations across the County. The Florida Department of Health and Orange County Government will review potential locations for vaccine distribution once more vaccines become available from the state.
How do I prove I received my first vaccination?
Once you have received your first vaccination, you will be provided with a COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card. Your Record Card is your documentation that you have received both doses of the vaccine. Do not lose your Record Card.
Is the vaccine free?
Yes. The vaccine is administered at no cost to the individual.
Will COVID-19 testing at the Orange County Convention Center be impacted?
No. Testing for COVID-19 at the Orange County Convention Center will continue and not be impacted by vaccinations. Testing is located at a separate location at the West Concourse. For more information about testing, visit ocfl.net/Testing.