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Hanscom transitions to Tier 2 vaccine eligibility

Staff Sgt. Tyler Watkins, 66th Medical Squadron noncommissioned officer in charge of immunizations, administers the COVID-19 vaccine to Maj. Erin Wilson, Tactical Data Network Enterprise deputy branch chief, at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., April 9. Hanscom expanded vaccine eligibility to include all base personnel in Tiers 1 and 2 as defined by the Department of Defense prioritization schema (U.S. Air Force photo by Mark Herlihy)

Staff Sgt. Tyler Watkins, 66th Medical Squadron noncommissioned officer in charge of immunizations, administers the COVID-19 vaccine to Maj. Erin Wilson, Tactical Data Network Enterprise deputy branch chief, at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., April 9. Hanscom expanded vaccine eligibility to include all base personnel in Tiers 1 and 2 as defined by the Department of Defense prioritization schema (U.S. Air Force photo by Mark Herlihy)

HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – Hanscom has expanded vaccine registration eligibility to include all base personnel in Tiers 1 and 2 as defined by the Department of Defense prioritization schema.

All eligible, unvaccinated individuals with a valid DOD identification card can now schedule COVID-19 vaccinations through the Defense Health Agency Appointing Portal at /informatics-stage.health.mil/COVAX/.

“This is another crucial step toward increasing the health and wellness of our community,” said Lt. Col. Ryan Gough, 66th Medical Squadron public health emergency officer. 

At this time, only the Pfizer vaccine is authorized for individuals age 16 and up. Individuals age 18 and up are eligible to receive either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines at Hanscom.

Gough said personnel should plan to receive both doses of vaccines at the same location, and vaccine brands should not be mixed.

“If you’ve already received a vaccine off base, we ask that you do not schedule a second dose at the installation,” he said. “Additionally, if you’ve received a first does of Moderna, you should not schedule a second dose of Pfizer. The vaccines are not designed to mix that way.”

The DHA portal is accessible from any device and does not require a common access card. Once on the website, personnel can navigate step by step to their respective installations’ vaccination sites, and create first and second dose appointments in 15-minute blocks. The portal will generate an AudioCARE message to remind patients to schedule their second dose.

“Patients scheduling an initial Pfizer vaccine appointment should book a second appointment via the portal immediately afterwards to ensure supply availability,” said Gough.

Patients are asked to bring a completed DHA Form 207 to their appointment.

Hanscom personnel still have the option to receive the vaccine through the state when eligible, said Gough.

Massachusetts residents can preregister for a COVID vaccine at vaccinesignup.mass.gov/#/ or find a vaccination site at vaxfinder.mass.gov/. New Hampshire residents can preregister at www.vaccines.nh.gov/.

Military personnel who receive their vaccines off base must notify Public Health to update their medical records.

Questions regarding the appointment portal can be directed to Mark Jenner, 66 MDS group practice manager, at 781-225-6203.

Additional information regarding the Hanscom vaccination effort can be found at www.Hanscom.af.mil/Coronavirus.