Visit our COVID-19 Information pages for details regarding the coronavirus as it relates to the Chickasaw Nation.
Our Nation > Community > COVID-19 > COVID-19 Vaccine

COVID-19 Vaccine

The Chickasaw Nation joined many groups across the country in receiving the first doses of COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine is distributed in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance.

With safety being a top priority, Chickasaw Nation health officials state there are many reasons to receive the vaccine as it is the best defense against COVID-19.

Vaccine Distribution

Vaccinations are available to the public at no cost. There are no citizenship, employment, or residency requirements to be eligible.

Vaccines are available by appointment at the Chickasaw Nation Emergency Operations Facility in Ada and at satellite clinics in Ardmore, Tishomingo and Purcell.

Appointments are scheduled online at You will upload a photo of your ID and health insurance card (optional) when scheduling. Health insurance is not required to receive the vaccine, but can be submitted for billing purposes. There is no cost to you.

Individuals who have received their first vaccine dose with another health care organization are strongly encouraged to complete their second dose with the same organization.

Vaccine recipients must be at least 12-years-old.

Those who have recently had COVID-19 are encouraged to get the vaccine as soon as they recover – there is no wait period unless the patient received treatment for COVID-19 with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma.

Those diagnosed with COVID-19 must be out of quarantine or isolation before scheduling an appointment.

The Chickasaw Nation COVID-19 Vaccine Call Center is available at (580) 272-1312.

In Case of Severe Weather

To keep our patients and employees safe, the Chickasaw Nation COVID-19 vaccination and testing drive-thru operations will be suspended in case of severe weather. During severe weather threats, monitor conditions, closings and delays on, KCNP radio and tribal social media pages. Patients with vaccine appointments scheduled during severe weather operation suspensions will be contacted to reschedule as needed.

General Information about COVID-19 Vaccinations

Much like other common vaccines, such as flu immunizations, chickenpox, hepatitis, HPV and more, the COVID-19 vaccine helps your body develop immunity to the virus. Vaccines work with your immune system so it will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed. Unlike some vaccines, the COVID-19 does not contain a live virus. Instead, the vaccine helps (or aids) by building antibodies, to protect you if you are exposed.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has robust scientific and regulatory processes in place to facilitate development and ensure the safety, effectiveness and quality of COVID-19 vaccines. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S. has a longstanding safety system to ensure all vaccines are as safe as possible.

The FDA issued full approval of the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, which is marketed under the brand name “Comirnaty.” The approval covers prevention of COVID-19 in individuals 16 years of age and older. The vaccine is still approved under the emergency use authorization (EUA) for adolescents 12-15 years of age, and for the additional booster dose in those age 18 and older regardless of health condition or occupation.

Pfizer’s Comirnaty is the only vaccine offered by Chickasaw Nation.

What to Expect When Receiving the First Vaccine:

  • Arrive at your scheduled appointment time and location. For the drive-thru location in Ada, expect to remain in your vehicle at all times. All other locations provide vaccinations inside the clinic.
  • Pets are not allowed in the vehicle (no exceptions). For the safety of patients and staff, traffic will move slowly at the drive-thru location.
  • For the safety of patients and staff, traffic will move slowly at all Chickasaw Nation vaccine drive-thru locations.
  • Following the vaccination, there is a required 15-minute observation time.
  • Recipients will receive a vaccine record card that will be required for the second dose.
  • Vaccine recipients should consult with a primary care provider if there are questions or concerns regarding side effects after either dose.

What to Expect When Receiving the Second Dose Vaccine:

  • You must receive a first dose through the Chickasaw Nation, in order to be eligible for a second dose through the Chickasaw Nation. If an individual has received a first dose through any agency or entity outside of the Chickasaw Nation, the second dose should also be scheduled through the same agency.
  • Second dose timeline: The Pfizer vaccination is given 21 days after the first dose. The Pfizer vaccine is the only vaccine offered at all locations.
  • Patients will be sent an email reminder 15 days after receiving the first dose of the vaccine. The email reminder will include a link to schedule a second dose vaccination appointment.
  • Please have your vaccination verification card and a photo ID ready.

Additional Booster Dose

Chickasaw Nation Department of Health (CNDH) leaders support guidance from the CDC encouraging the COVID-19 vaccination for all eligible age groups and especially urges everyone age 18 and older to receive the booster shot, regardless of occupation or health condition.

Boosters are recommended for all vaccines. Individuals who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine should receive a booster two months after the primary dose. Those ages 18 and older who received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine should get a booster six months after completing the primary series. CNDH offers the Pfizer vaccine all vaccination sites as the CDC allows using different vaccine for booster doses, regardless of the vaccine used for the primary dose(s).

The CDC confirms that the Pfizer vaccine can be used as an additional booster dose in those who received the first and second doses of the Moderna vaccine and the initial dose of the Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.

Vaccines at Your Local Health Department

Public health departments are offering COVID-19 vaccines according to CDC recommended guidelines. Register online at

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is a breakthrough infection?

    A breakthrough infection may occur even if someone is fully vaccinated. They are expected because most vaccines are not 100% effective at preventing infection. However, vaccinations are the best tool we have to reduce the spread of the virus and prevent serious illness, hospitalization and death. Non-vaccinated people are the main source of virus transmission, leading to other vaccinated and non-vaccinated individuals becoming infected with COVID-19. Non-vaccinated people are much more likely to have serious infection with death or long-term hospitalization and/or complications from COVID-19. For every 100 patients admitted to a hospital with COVID-19, 93-95% of them are non-vaccinated. Those who are fully vaccinated, even if they have a breakthrough infection, are very unlikely to suffer a severe illness, are very unlikely to die due to COVID-19, are unlikely to suffer long-term complications due to COVID-19 and are less likely to infect others.

    Find more information here.

  2. The Delta variant is affecting those who are vaccinated. Why should I get vaccinated if those who have already been vaccinated are still getting sick?

    The Delta variant is highly contagious and infects more than two times the number of people for every infected person than earlier forms of the virus that cause COVID-19. This results in virus spread very rapidly through a large number of people. Although breakthrough infections occur, they are less frequent and less severe than in those who are unvaccinated. Those who are vaccinated are infectious for a shorter period of time and are less likely to experience severe illness, hospitalization and death. Low vaccination rates in communities drive a rapid surge in cases associated with the Delta variant, and increase the chances of other variants emerging.

    Learn more about the Delta variant.

  3. Is the COVID-19 vaccine safe for pregnant or breastfeeding women?

    Yes. The CDC urges vaccination for people who are pregnant, breastfeeding, trying to get pregnant or may become pregnant in the near future. Those who are pregnant or recently pregnant are more likely to have severe illness with COVID-19 if unvaccinated.

    Evidence about the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy has been growing. This data suggests the benefits of receiving a COVID-19 vaccine outweigh any known or potential risks of vaccination during pregnancy.

    There is currently no evidence that any COVID-19 vaccines, cause fertility problems in women or men.

    Learn more here.

  4. Should my teen get vaccinated?

    COVID-19 vaccination can help protect your teen and/or child from getting COVID-19. Although fewer children and teens have been sick with COVID-19 compared to adults, they can be infected and get sick with the virus that causes COVID-19, and can then spread the virus to others. Getting your teen vaccinated helps to protect them and your family. Vaccination is recommended for everyone 12 years and older. Currently, the Pfizer Comirnaty vaccine is the only one available to ages 12 years and older. The Chickasaw Nation offers Comirnaty exclusively at all clinic locations.

    Learn more here.

  5. Can I get vaccinated against COVID-19 while I am currently sick with COVID-19?

    No. People with COVID-19 who have symptoms should wait to be vaccinated until they have recovered from their illness and have met the criteria for discontinuing isolation; those without symptoms should also wait until they meet the criteria before getting vaccinated. This guidance also applies to people who get COVID-19 before getting their second dose of vaccine. As soon as people have recovered from COVID-19 with resolution of most major symptoms such as shortness of breath, they should be vaccinated. Many hospital patients recovering from COVID-19 choose to be vaccinated to protect themselves against future COVID-19 infection. Minor symptoms such as loss of taste or smell, nasal congestion, fatigue, headache and non-productive cough may continue for weeks and months after a COVID-19 infection. Vaccination should be scheduled as soon as the person is no longer likely actively shedding virus and out of quarantine.

  6. What is a booster dose, and what is the difference between a booster dose and an additional dose?

    Sometimes people who are moderately to severely immunocompromised do not build enough protection when they first get a vaccination. When this happens, getting another dose of the vaccine can help build more protection against the disease. This appears to be the case for some immunocompromised people and COVID-19 vaccines. CDC and FDA recommends moderately to severely immunocompromised people receive an additional (third) dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) at least 28 days after the completion of the initial two-dose mRNA COVID-19 vaccine series. This additional dose for people who are immunocompromised is currently available at all Chickasaw Nation vaccination sites.

    In contrast, a “booster dose” refers to another dose of a vaccine that is given to someone who built enough protection after vaccination, but then that protection decreased over time. The Chickasaw Nation offers a booster dose to those who meet recommended criteria. CNDH health officials recommend a booster dose six months after becoming fully vaccinated.

  7. If we need a booster dose, does that mean that the vaccines are not working?

    No. COVID-19 vaccines are working very well to prevent severe illness, hospitalization and death, even against the widely circulating Delta variant. However, with the Delta variant, public health experts are starting to see reduced protection against mild and moderate disease. For that reason, public health officials recommend a booster shot so vaccinated people maintain protection over the coming months.

  8. Can people who received Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen (J&J/Janssen) COVID-19 vaccine get a booster dose of an mRNA vaccine?

    No, at this time there is not enough information to support getting an mRNA vaccine dose (either Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) if someone has previously gotten a J&J/Janssen vaccine. People who got the J&J/Janssen vaccine will likely need a booster dose of the J&J/Janssen vaccine, as more data is expected soon. With this data in hand, CDC will keep the public informed with a timely plan for J&J/Janssen booster shots.

    Find answers to more questions about a booster dose from the CDC here.

  9. Do I need to follow protocols like wearing a mask and avoiding large indoor gatherings after I am fully vaccinated?

    With the Delta variant being highly infectious, layered prevention strategies, such as wearing a mask indoors in public and responsible distancing, are necessary to help reduce the spread of the virus. It is especially recommended for people who are immunocompromised or at risk of severe disease to wear a mask indoors in public.

  10. Will the COVID-19 vaccine alter my DNA?

    No. COVID-19 vaccines do not change or interact with your DNA in any way. Biologically this is simply impossible as it is not how mRNA vaccines work. None of the ingredients in these vaccines enter the cell’s nucleus where DNA is kept and none of the mRNA vaccines contain DNA or can alter the DNA of your cells in any way. Both mRNA and viral vector vaccines deliver instructions (genetic material) to the cells to start building protection against the virus that causes COVID-19. However, the material never enters the nucleus of the cell, which is where the DNA is stored.

    Find more information here.

COVID-19 Vaccination Resources