A Message to the Community

Since the COVID-19 vaccine’s arrival at Valley nearly a month ago, thousands of our employees, doctors, and area first responders have been vaccinated to ensure they can continue to care for you and others in the community. 

Valley is equally dedicated to vaccinating the community at large.

However, due to current supply, we are unable to do so at this time. The concerns about supplies reaching hospitals have been well reported, and Valley is hoping this situation improves soon. When it does, the community will be encouraged to make appointments via our web site.

Until this time, we ask that you please refrain from visiting or calling a Valley location, including your Valley doctor’s office, to inquire about the vaccine so that our staff can continue to focus on patient care. Further updates will be posted on the web page above.

Please understand that appointments for the COVID-19 vaccine are necessary and Valley is unable to accommodate walk-ins. There is also no opportunity to receive “leftover” vaccine at the conclusion of the day.

If you are interested in pre-registering with the state to receive the vaccine at a location they have established, please go to covidvaccine.nj.gov. With high consumer demand that has flooded vaccination site call centers and sometimes the state’s online site, the New Jersey Department of Health has provided an online form for people to fill out and return if they are experiencing problems with the online scheduling system. In addition, the state has added automated phone support at 1-855-568-0545. Live operators will be available in the coming days.

Thank you for your patience, and please continue to take steps to keep yourself safe, including wearing a mask, washing your hands frequently, and staying socially distanced.

The availability of vaccines to protect our community against coronavirus is an important step in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.

With two vaccines on the market, hope is here.

The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine and the Moderna vaccine have been approved and are now being administered to healthcare professionals nationwide, including Valley doctors and staff. Data shows that both are highly effective – 94 percent and higher – in protecting against COVID-19.

How Do the Vaccines Work?

Like all vaccines, the COVID-19 vaccines help our bodies develop immunity to the virus that causes COVID-19 without the body actually contracting the illness. Subsequently, antibodies and other immune reactions fight the virus should it enter the body.

Note: The COVID-19 vaccines DO NOT contain any live or dead virus material.

WATCH: In this edition of “Virtually Valley,” Robert Brenner, MD, Valley’s President of Clinical Integration and Physician Enterprise, presents a detailed review of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.

Vaccine Safety

We believe that the COVID-19 vaccine is a safe and effective way to protect you, your loved ones, and others against the virus. Due to the deadly toll associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, the vaccines were fast-tracked to make them available as soon as possible. However, there were no shortcuts in the process for safety and efficacy.

So far, nationally reported side effects of the two vaccines include:

  • Injection site pain
  • Injection site swelling/redness
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Body aches

These side effects are actually a good sign – they indicate that the body is developing the hoped for immune response against the COVID-19 virus. All of the mentioned side effects are short term and dissipate within a few days.

Vaccine Distribution

New Jersey will be distributing the vaccine in three phases:

Phase 1: Limited Supply 

    a. Healthcare workers and nursing home residents and staff

    b. Frontline essential workers (police, firefighters, etc.) and those over the age of 75

    c. Additional essential workers, those with underlying medical conditions, and those above the age of 65

Phase 2: Larger Amount of Doses

    a. Continuing vaccination of Phase 1 persons

    b. Slowly increasing availability to other groups

Phase 3: Rolling Supply for the Remainder of the Population

Regardless of vaccination status, it is very important to continue to adhere to safety guidelines. This includes:

  • Wearing a mask
  • Keeping at least 6ft away from others
  • Avoiding crowds and gatherings
  • Following CDC travel restrictions and quarantine guidelines

More COVID-19 Vaccine Resources

For the most up to date and accurate information regarding COVID-19 and the vaccine, follow the links below:

Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19 Vaccination (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) 

Facts About COVID-19 Vaccines (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)