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Last reviewed 10/22/2021
|Notice: UCSF is providing COVID-19 booster shots for eligible patients and third doses for immunocompromised patients.|
COVID-19 vaccines continue to be remarkably effective in reducing the risk of severe disease and hospitalization, even against the widely circulating Delta variant.
Below you'll find information on who can get the COVID-19 vaccine, where to get it, and who's eligible for booster shots, plus FAQs about vaccine safety and more.
Who's eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine
Everyone who's at least 12 years old is eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine.
Children ages 5 to 11 may become eligible in fall 2021, and younger children may be eligible in a later phase.
UCSF Health is only able to offer COVID-19 vaccines to UCSF patients.
Where to get the COVID-19 vaccine
Both the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines require two doses and two appointments. When you get your first dose, we'll schedule your second. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is a single dose.
If you're a UCSF patient, you can get the vaccine at one of our pop-up clinics in San Francisco. We recommend that you schedule an appointment by calling (415) 476-3307. We accept walk-ins, but there may be a wait due to staffing shortages.
Note that our Mount Zion and Mission Bay clinics vaccinate all patients ages 12 and older. The Parnassus location only serves adults ages 18 and older.
- Mount Zion campus
2356 Sutter St., First Floor
Ida Friend's Café
Wednesdays, 8 a.m. - noon
- Mission Bay campus
1825 Fourth St., Fourth Floor
Mondays and Thursdays, 8 a.m. - noon
- Parnassus campus (adults only)
500 Parnassus Avenue
Ocean View Room
Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 7:30 a.m. - 3 p.m.
For some patients, it may be quicker to get the vaccine at their local pharmacy or vaccination clinic. To schedule an appointment, visit your pharmacy’s website, your county's vaccine website, California's My Turn, or the national Vaccines.gov site.
|More information about vaccine appointments for kids|
Editor's note: Rest assured that UCSF is closely following the news about booster shots. We know that U.S. health officials have approved Moderna and Johnson & Johnson boosters, while also allowing patients to receive boosters of a vaccine other than the one they initially received. We'll provide more information about these developments soon.
Pfizer booster shots have been approved for certain groups of people (see list below). To get one, you have to have received your second Pfizer shot at least six months ago.
UCSF Health is offering Pfizer booster shots to eligible patients. See above for our locations, plus where to book an appointment for a booster shot in your community.
You should get a Pfizer booster shot if you are:
- Age 65 or older
- Age 50 to 64 with an underlying medical condition
- A resident of a long-term care facility
- At risk for transmission or exposure at work
You may choose to get a Pfizer booster shot if you are:
- Age 18 to 49 with an underlying medical condition
Patients with the following health conditions are eligible for a Pfizer booster shot:
- Chronic kidney disease
- Chronic lung disease
- Diabetes (type 1 or type 2)
- Heart disease
- Pregnancy (or recent pregnancy)
- See the full list of underlying conditions from the CDC.
The purpose of a booster shot – which helps maximize and extend the protection that the COVID-19 vaccine provides – is different from an "additional dose" of the vaccine, which was approved in August 2021 for immunocompromised patients. (If you're immunocompromised, find out about eligibility for a third shot of either Pfizer or Moderna in the next section.)
Moderately to severely immunocompromised patients who received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine should get a third dose, according to recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). A third dose can provide additional protection to those whose immune system didn't fully respond to the initial two doses.
The CDC has not recommended an additional dose for patients who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Currently, there's not enough data to determine whether immunocompromised people who received that vaccine also potentially have an improved response after an additional dose.
UCSF Health is offering third doses to eligible patients. See above for our locations, plus where to book an appointment for a shot in your community. UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland will offer third doses for immunocompromised patients at the hospital's Outpatient Center in the near future.
You're considered immunocompromised and eligible for a third dose if you:
- Are receiving treatment for tumors or blood cancer
- Have received an organ transplant and are taking medication to suppress your immune system
- Have received a stem cell transplant within the last two years or are taking medicine to suppress your immune system
- Have a condition that moderately or severely impairs immune function
- Have advanced or untreated HIV infection
- Are taking high-dose corticosteroids or other medications that suppress immune function
- Wait at least four weeks after your second vaccine dose to get the third shot. If you have received COVID-19 monoclonal antibody therapy, you must wait 90 days before getting your third vaccine dose.
- Get the same vaccine type (Pfizer or Moderna) as your initial shots, if possible.
- You do not need a note from your primary care provider to prove that you're eligible for a third dose.
Free MUNI Rides in San Francisco
The San Francisco public transit agency is providing free MUNI and paratransit rides to and from COVID-19 vaccine appointments. The offer is good for trips to any vaccination site. You'll have to show your vaccination card or proof of your appointment (such as an email or text confirmation) when you board.
Public Health Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People
See the latest COVID-19 recommendations from the CDC. Learn about your risks when it comes to socializing with vaccinated or unvaccinated people, other social activities outside the home, domestic and international travel, and more.