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Posted by: desperate ( )
Date: March 09, 2021 05:11PM

I have a young adult son who has a history of asthma which has been severe enough that it's caused him to have to be hospitalized for oxygen, breathing treatments, and IV steroids and even with all those things he was having trouble oxygenating sufficiently. He's had pneumonia complications from the common cold multiple times, as well. He really only has severe attacks in the presence of respiratory infections, but Covid is a respiratory infection. The state has singled out asthma as one of the few conditions that are NOT yet eligible to receive a vaccine. I found a statement online from the CDC saying people with moderate to severe asthma could become severely ill if infected and they are at high risk. I don't get why Utah has decided to go out of their way to treat asthmatics as disposable?

I personally know people who are at much less risk than my son who have had no problem getting fully vaccinated. I'm not saying I begrudge anyone at higher-than-normal risk getting the shot, just that I am angry that the condition my son has is being singled out as not important enough for protection. I've tried calling the health department to see if they can help me (it rings off the hook and no one ever answers), I've tried asking permission on an online chat helpline to donate my own slot (I qualify based on a different - and lesser - risk factor) to him and was told that wouldn't be allowed, and I've tried writing to elected officials to try to get them to stop excluding a condition from eligibility that poses a very real threat to the lives of those who have it should they contract this disease (no answer at all from any of them, not even a form letter).

Getting the vaccine based on underlying conditions is done via the honor system but abusing that is not how we personally roll. I don't want to be pulling the rug out from someone who needs it even more by lying about a nonexistent condition chosen from the magic list of "yes" conditions the state has put out. I'm looking for a way to help him get vaccinated *legitimately* sooner rather than much, much later.

Anyone know how to find out if there are places vaccines are going unused and need to be given before they go bad, anyone know how to actually get in touch with someone who will help, or any other suggestions you can think of?

If he has to wait until they open it up to every person of every age who wants one, we're going to be stuck with him remaining at very high risk for a long time to come. He hasn't been able to leave the house for a year because people as a whole society weren't willing to cooperate with mitigation like masks and distancing. Suggestions???

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Posted by: stillanon ( )
Date: March 09, 2021 06:55PM

Just check a box online for ongoing medical issues and get him an appointment. He's not healthy and is eligible to be vaccinated in other states. It's kind of a gray area for cheating. They're giving it to overweight people just because they are overweight. They're not obese. being a 5'10" & 207 lbs. gets you 30 BMI. That's half the fit guys at my gym. They're not fat, just muscular. Your son needs it more than they do. Just get him vaccinated and sleep well.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/09/2021 06:59PM by stillanon.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: March 09, 2021 07:26PM

Try asking his physician for help. Apart from that, do what you need to do. This is not a time to be shy or reticent. I can tell you that teachers banded together to help ourselves and our colleagues get vaccinated. I got mine because a colleague alerted me to some (unexpected) open appointments. My elderly family members got theirs through another colleague's alert to a back door type of approach. You know that your son desperately needs the vaccine, so quit being so particular about what you need to do to get it.

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Posted by: gemini ( )
Date: March 09, 2021 11:17PM

My S.O. called his local pharmacy and they got him right in, no questions asked. You might want to try that.

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Posted by: Susan I/S ( )
Date: March 10, 2021 01:36AM

I am not in Utah but I was able to find all the info I needed and the place to sign Hubby up by going to my county health department website. I was also able to sign up for a weekly newsletter they put out that has been very helpful.

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Posted by: lapsed2 ( )
Date: March 10, 2021 02:43PM

My husband has asthma, but because he was on prednisone for an extended period of time, he was eligible. Prednisone weakens the immune system for years after. I’m assuming your son, with history of pneumonia, has been also. A weakened immune system makes him qualified. He got his first shot today. Good luck.

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Posted by: cl2 ( )
Date: March 10, 2021 05:14PM

get the vaccine starting April 1st. I didn't qualify for the change 2 weeks ago when they listed diabetes at 9.0 A1c. I was just not far below that mark. I called my doctor to get a letter and, the next day, they gave instructions that those over 50 could get their vaccinations, so I had my "husband" check the hospital's system for one and we got me in for tomorrow at 7:45 a.m. (I chose that time on purpose). I'm getting the J&J one on purpose. I only want one shot.

I swear I read somewhere that they have a place you can look for extra shots that are available, leftovers or whatever. I wish I could remember where I read it, but it seems it was in Utah.

I do know that the local pharmacy was offering them, but you had to pay to get them. Spencer Cox said that anyone who has to pay will be reimbursed.

It was my understanding, as well as anyone else I've talked to, that these shots are free. Well, they are charging my insurance. I guess they are free for people who don't have insurance.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/10/2021 05:15PM by cl2.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: March 10, 2021 05:51PM

I would be surprised if your insurance charges you anything at all. For whatever reason my vaccine provider wanted my insurance information, but I was never charged for the vaccine.

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Posted by: [|] ( )
Date: March 10, 2021 06:01PM

"The coronavirus vaccine “must be provided to vaccine recipients with no out-of-pocket costs,” according to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)"

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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: March 13, 2021 06:11PM

Your insurance company pays the full bill for vaccination. For people without insurance, the government just eats the cost, but they'd rather bill the insurance company.

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Posted by: Devoted Exmo ( )
Date: March 10, 2021 06:19PM

I got mine yesterday at a pharmacy. I was covered by insurance, but asked what they cost without insurance and it was just over $2. Seriously. That's it.

Back to the Original Poster. Does your son take any steroids currently -- inhaled or otherwise? If so he could qualify:

Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from blood, bone marrow, or organ transplant; HIV; long-term use of corticosteroids; or other medicines that weaken the immune system.

Steroids weaken the immune system.

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Posted by: Mother Who Knows ( )
Date: March 11, 2021 03:40AM

I don't know how you can get around the rules. My elderly mother had to wait until the school teachers got vaccinated, and it was a very slow process. You probably won't have to wait longer than a month, as things are going now.

Try "" Sign up with the county where you live (We're in Salt Lake County), and also keep checking all the drug store websites. Some places make appointments ahead of time. The 40 and over category comes up on April 1, I believe, but you should start trying for an appointment right now. Just keep on checking the websites, several times a day, and at night. That's what we did. Mom gets her final shot Friday

Governor Cox announced my eligibility group was coming up, two weeks ahead, and I immediately started trying for an appointment. I recommend you use the websites instead of the phone. The Salt Lake County website had crashed, so I tried phoning for 4 hours, and got a busy signal. 4 hours later, the website came back on, and I had to rush to get an appointment. You need to work very fast on the websites, because the appointments fill up as you are clicking on them. I kept clicking and failing, until I finally got an appointment on the last day, 5 weeks down the road. The appointment was with, Salt Lake County, at the Maverick Center, where you can stay in your car. It takes 30-45 minutes.

Like you, I didn't want to wait a long time, so I kept trying the drug stores--Wallgreen's, Walmart, and Smith's. The links to these stores are included on the "" website, now.

I went with Smith's Pharmacy, which uses the website
"", and I scrolled down to "Utah", and put in the local zip codes until I found a pharmacy which showed times available. Most Pharmacies were filled, but I found a time for the very next day, at a Smith's on the other side of the valley, and jumped all over that!

If you do this, be sure to cancel the appointment you don't intend to keep.

Utah used to have a rule that you had to stay within your own county, but I believe that is no longer the case. You could try to call Wasatch County, Midway and Heber; or try Wasatch County, Park City, or some other smaller county. They have announced that there are extra shots available in Utah County.

I had to get an emergency flu shot, one year when they were scarce, so that I could help take care of my newborn grandchild, so I drove from SLC to Coalville at 5:00 am, to stand in line in the freezing cold, and I was happy to do it!

Don't get discouraged!

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Posted by: Mother Who Knows ( )
Date: March 11, 2021 03:49AM

Sorry, I meant Summit County. They have vaccines.

Right now, Provo and Utah County are your best bet.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: March 11, 2021 07:21AM

IMO it's worth asking around about what time new appointments open with the pharmacies and other providers. Generally, providers open new appointments on specific days and times.

I'm glad that you were able to get your appointment!

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Posted by: cl2 ( )
Date: March 11, 2021 01:15PM

I've had no trouble at all getting 2 appts at Logan Regional Hospital. Let me see if I can get their website.

I showed up this morning and they got Pfizer in instead of J&J, so I came home and made an appt for April 2nd for the second one. The process was quick. We didn't have to wait around long at all. I FEAR shots (even being diabetic). It was nothing. I haven't had any reaction so far. I have some postherpetic neuralgia going on in my right upper arm and that pain is so bad that this was absolutely nothing.

Our deductible is covered already, so even if they did charge my insurance, I won't have to pay anything.

But try other counties if you are willing to drive. My boyfriend signed up 2 weeks before I did as he is older, and he isn't set up until the 16th at a clinic by the hospital.

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Posted by: Grits ( )
Date: March 11, 2021 01:17PM

VACCINESPOTTER.ORG It is website that allows you to book appointments directly with a pharmacy in your state. Log on and choose your state and then scroll through the places available in your state. Appointments dates and times are listed for each location. When you choose to book, you are booking directly and will received a confirmation email. It will only book appointments if you meet the current vaccine phase in your state.

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Posted by: catnip ( )
Date: March 13, 2021 01:17AM

I'm in NM, but I imagine that this technique could work anywhere. The powers that be JUST added chronic kidney disease to the list of maladies that can move you up on the list, so I'd have gotten there eventually.

I was seeing my primary care provider a couple of weeks ago, and said, "Look. I'm 73 and 3/4 years old and have Stage 4 renal disease. COVID would very likely kill me. Can't you help?"

She promptly called one of the nurses, set up an appt for me at my own clinic, and I have had my first vaccination. Second one is set for St. Patrick's Day. No herd scene, just my own clinic. I'm so grateful for that.

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Posted by: desperate ( )
Date: April 02, 2021 04:18PM

A belated thank you to everyone who posted advice with my original post. My son was able to get his first dose this week! I can't express the degree of relief I feel about that.

Here's hoping people will work together to really put this behind us by agreeing to be vaccinated and also continuing to mask and distance until every person has had a chance to develop protection. Like everyone else, I've felt like I was being crushed under a ton of boulders for the past year. I feel like half of those have been lifted. More will come off 2 weeks after his 2nd dose. I hope to get rid of the rest of those boulders and wish less of that last part of the load was dependent on the group effort of society as a whole. We've got a ways to go. Being "eligible" for the shot clearly isn't the same as being able to find an open appointment that works. I feel so lucky my son has been able to finally receive a dose and schedule his next.

Best wishes to all of you and here's hoping we can work together to extinguish this thing before further spread, and the resulting variants, have a chance to make us all start this hell over from square one.

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