VA offers COVID booster shots to veterans
Havre clinic set for Thursday, surge expected to hit region
Last updated 12/7/2021 at 12:46pm
Vetarns have the opportunity to get a booster shot on their COVID-19 vaccinations in Havre Thursday with a clinic set by Montana Veterans Administration Health Care System in Holiday Village Mall.
The clinic, set to run from 9 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. in the former location of Herberger's, is open to veterans, their spouses and their caregivers. Moderna and the Johnson & Johnson Janssen COVID-19 vaccines, and influenza vaccine, will be available at the clinic.
The clinic comes as new cases in the area are dropping following a major surge driven by the delta variant of the virus that causes COVID-19. As people gather more indoors in the colder weather - and the impacts of the recently identified omicron variant are studied - surges are again stargingt around the country and likely to hit Montana soon.
Health officials are urging people to get vaccinated and people who were vaccinated with the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines six more more months ago or vaccinated with the Janssen vaccine two or months ago to get vaccinated. People can mix and match, using any version of COVID-19 vaccine approved in the U.S. for the booster, regardless of the brand of vaccine originally used.
"Regardless of a person's age or health status, the delta variant is a disease that is equally infectious unless we have the protection that the COVID-19 vaccines offer. All the data suggests that vaccines reduce the risk of contracting COVID-19 and, more importantly, of being hospitalized or dying from COVID-19," Montana Veterans Administration Health Care System Executive Director Judy Hayman, Ph.D., said in a release about the clinic "Vaccines are the best way we can protect veterans, employees and all Montana communities against COVID-19. Booster shots allow us to better protect those at higher risk, the health care teams who care for them, and our communities."
All veterans, veterans' spouses, caregivers and CHAMPVA recipients are also eligible to get a COVID-19 vaccine from Montana VA. Under the SAVE Lives Act, the VA's legal authority to provide COVID-19 vaccines expanded to include all veterans, regardless of their VA health care enrollment status, as well as veteran spouses, caregivers and some beneficiaries.
Veterans who meet the eligibility requirements are encouraged to call and schedule an appointment, the release said. Appointments are limited, and veterans must call the Montana VA scheduling line at 877-468-8387 and select Option 2, and then Option 2 again to be scheduled. The Montana VA scheduling line is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Walk-in vaccines will also be available.
Each person must bring their vaccine card in order to receive a booster shot. Masking is required at all Montana VA booster events. As booster clinics are scheduled, this information will be available at Montana VA Health Care System's webpage, https://www.va.gov/montana-health-care/programs/covid-19-vaccines .
Vaccines for initial vaccinations and boosters are available at multiple locations in the area.
The Blaine County Health Department, 406-357-2345, and the Fort Belknap Health Center, public health nurse 406-353-3250 and pharmacy at 406-353-3104, can schedule vaccinations and booster shots.
In Hill County, vaccinations and booster shots are available through Bullhook Community Health Center, 406-395-4305; the Hill County Health Department, 406-400-2415; Northern Montana Health Care's Specialty Medical Center at 406-265-7831 or its Family Medical Center at 406-265-5408; Western Drug Pharmacy, 406-265-9601; Gary & Leo's Pharmacy, which takes walk-ins; Walmart; and the Rocky Boy Health Center 406-395-4486.
Vaccine is available in Chouteau County at the Chouteau County Health Department, 406-622-3771, and Big Sandy Pharmacy at 406-378-5588.
People can call Liberty County Health Department at 406-759-5517 to schedule a vaccination.