Frequently Asked Questions

NOTICE: COVID-19 guidance is under construction. Check back frequently for updated information.

About COVID-19

How does COVID-19 spread?

COVID-19 typically spreads three ways.

  • Respiratory droplets:
    • When a person is infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, they produce small droplets containing the virus when they sneeze, cough, or talk. These droplets are often not visible to the naked eye, but can be seen on slow motion cameras. A healthy person who is close to the infected person can then breathe in these droplets and catch the virus. This is similar to how flu and cold viruses spread.
  • Airborne transmission:
    • Sometimes very small respiratory droplets can stay in the air for several hours and travel longer distances. A healthy person can then breathe in these droplets and catch the virus. This happens more often in indoor settings that are not well ventilated.
  • Infected surfaces or objects:
    • It may be possible to get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes. This type of spread is thought to be less common with COVID-19, especially when you wash your hands regularly.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Symptoms of COVID-19 can be mild, like the symptoms of a common cold or allergies. They can also be serious, like shortness of breath or trouble breathing. In the most serious cases, COVID-19 can cause pneumonia, acute respiratory distress syndrome, organ failure, or death. These severe outcomes are more likely to happen in people with risk factors for severe disease, as well as people who aren’t vaccinated or haven’t gotten all their recommended vaccine doses.

Symptoms can include, but are not limited to:

  • Cough
  • Tiredness
  • Fever
  • Loss of taste and/or smell
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

People who have any COVID-like symptoms should get tested as soon as possible and isolate.

Emergency warning signs

If someone is showing any of these signs, seek emergency medical care immediately by calling 911 or going to your local emergency facility:

  • Trouble breathing.

  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest.

  • New confusion.

  • Inability to wake up or stay awake.

  • Pale, gray, or blue-colored skin, lips, or nail beds, depending on skin tone.

This list does not include all possible severe symptoms. Please call your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you.

General Vaccine Information

Who should get the COVID-19 vaccine?

  • Everyone aged 6 years and older should get 1 updated Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to be up to date (and boosted).
  • People aged 65 years and older may get a 2nd dose of updated Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.
  • People who are moderately or severely immunocompromised may get additional doses of updated Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.

Is the COVID-19 vaccine still free?

COVID-19 vaccines and treatment drugs will remain free for the time being. You don’t need ID or insurance to get vaccinated. Many providers take walk-ins and same-day appointments. You can get a COVID-19 vaccine at a pharmacy, doctor’s office and other health care providers.

  • Under the federal Vaccines for Children program, COVID-19 vaccines will continue to be available at no cost for children through 18 years of age who are uninsured, underinsured, on Medicaid or Medicaid eligible, and/or Alaskan Native or American Indian.
  • The COVID-19 vaccine is considered preventive care. Currently, COVID-19 vaccinations are covered under Medicare Part B without cost sharing, and this will continue. Private insurance plans and Health First Colorado, the state’s Medicaid program and Child Health Plan Plus (CHP+), will also continue to cover the vaccine at no charge to enrolled members.

Are the vaccines safe to use?

Yes. Hundreds of millions of people in the United States have safely received a COVID-19 vaccine. The COVID-19 vaccination reduces the risk of COVID-19 and its potentially severe complications. The vaccines have been through more safety testing than many other mandated and fully approved vaccines and the manufacturers have met all necessary safety requirements.

Where can I get vaccinated in Denver?

What are the side effects of the COVID-19 vaccines?

Some people experience short-term mild or moderate vaccine reactions that resolve without complication or injury including pain at the site of the injection. Others may develop systemic reactions like headache, chills, fatigue, muscle pain or fever lasting for a day or two. Keep in mind that these side effects are indicators that your immune system is responding to the vaccine and are common when receiving any vaccine.

If I have already had COVID-19, do I still need to be vaccinated?

Yes, you should be vaccinated regardless of whether you already had COVID-19. Research has not yet shown how long you are protected from getting COVID-19 again after you recover, but we do know vaccination helps protect you even if you’ve already had COVID-19.

Is it safe to get the vaccine if I am pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning a pregnancy?

  • Yes. Getting a COVID-19 vaccine is the best way to protect yourself and your baby during the pandemic.
  • Pregnant people are more likely to get very sick if they become infected with COVID-19. Getting sick with COVID-19 can lead to serious pregnancy complications, including complications that can result in death.
  • COVID-19 vaccines are safe for pregnant people and people who are trying to become pregnant. The vaccines help keep you from getting sick. They won’t harm your baby or make it harder for you to get pregnant.
  • Learn more about vaccines and pregnancy at the CDC’s website

Do I need to be a U.S. citizen to get a vaccine?

  • No. You do not need to be a U.S. citizen, and you will not need to prove lawful presence to get a COVID-19 vaccine in Colorado.
  • The Department of Homeland Security announced that vaccination sites will be considered sensitive locations. This means that ICE will not carry out enforcement activities at or near vaccination sites.
  • State and local public health agencies will never share your information for any immigration or law enforcement purposes. And receiving the COVID-19 vaccine will not count against you in any public charge determinations.

What should I do if I lose my vaccine card?

Vaccines for those ages 6 months–11 years old

Can children get a COVID-19 vaccine?

  • Yes, children as young as 6 months old can get a COVID-19 vaccine.

Do children get the same type of vaccine as adults?

It depends on their age. Children age 12 to 17 years get the same kind of vaccines as adults. Children aged 6 months through 11 years get smaller doses of the vaccines. These doses are tailored to make sure they are safe and effective for each age group.

Where can my child get a COVID-19 vaccine?

  • Find providers and appointments near you with these online vaccine appointment search tools: Vaccine Finder.org
  • As of May 11, 2023, state mobile bus vaccination clinics will no longer operate.