COVID-19 Vaccine

California Correctional Health Care Services (CCHCS) and the California Department of Corrections (CDCR) are working to administer the COVID-19 vaccine to employees and incarcerated individuals in alignment with California Department of Public Health (CDPH) guidelines. Vaccination administration started on December 22, 2020 at California Health Care Facility (CHCF) and has since expanded statewide. It is our intent to offer COVID-19 vaccinations to all CDCR and CCHCS employees and incarcerated individuals.

To view statewide numbers, view the CDCR/CCHCS COVID-19 Update page.

How does the COVID-19 vaccine work?

COVID-19 vaccines help our bodies develop immunity to the virus that causes COVID-19 without us having to get the illness. COVID-19 vaccines that have been authorized by FDA have been carefully evaluated in clinical trials for their ability to protect us from COVID-19.

Is the COVID-19 vaccine safe?

COVID-19 vaccines have been authorized by the FDA and have been carefully evaluated in several rounds of clinical trials. The CDC is also tracking any adverse reactions patients may have as the vaccine rollout begins.

How is COVID-19 vaccine distribution determined?

We are administering vaccines following state and federal guidelines. Vaccine distribution is based on several criteria for both staff and incarcerated individuals in a phased process. Our supply comes from the California Department of Public Health and its guidelines for statewide distribution.

How many doses of the vaccine do I need?

Both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses to be effective. It is important to come back and receive the second dose for the vaccine to be effective.

Is the COVID-19 vaccine mandatory?

As of now, no, but it is strongly encouraged as an additional layer of protection for yourself and everyone around you. Any updates will be communicated in a timely manner.

I already had COVID-19. Do I still need the vaccine?

Yes. People are advised to get the vaccine even if they have been sick with COVID-19 before. Re-infection is possible, as are severe health risks associated with COVID-19.

Will everyone still be required to practice COVID-19 protocols after being vaccinated?

Yes. Getting vaccinated is just one of many steps we can take to protect against COVID-19. Vaccines work with your immune system so your body will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed. Other steps, like masks, regular testing and social distancing, help reduce the chance of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others.

If a someone declines the vaccine now, will they have the option to get the vaccine later?

Yes, but supply of the vaccine is limited. While CDCR and CCHCS are working with the California Department of Public Health to maximize the number of available doses, there is no guarantee when the next batch will be made available. Individuals are encouraged to accept the vaccine where and when it is offered.

Will a flu vaccine protect against COVID-19?

Getting a flu vaccine will not protect against COVID-19, however flu vaccination has many other important benefits. Flu vaccines have been shown to reduce the risk of flu illness, hospitalization and death. Getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever, not only to reduce your risk from flu but also to help conserve potentially scarce health care resources.