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Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine

Our priority is to protect our Service members, Department of Defense (DOD) civilians and families to safeguard national security capabilities and support the whole-of-government response to the COVID-19 Pandemic. The DOD has an independent but collaborative program with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) to provide COVID-19 vaccines to DOD uniformed service members. This includes active duty, Guard/Reserve, retirees, family members, civilian employees and selected DOD contract personnel. 

All eligible and authorized TRICARE beneficiaries can make a COVID-19 vaccine appointment, as available, at a DOD vaccination site.

The vaccine itself is offered at no cost, but there may be a cost based on your plan for an office visit or if you require follow-on care. Wherever you eventually receive your vaccination, please remember you'll need to check availability before showing up. To find out more, please visit www.tricare.mil/COVIDVaccine.

COVID-19 Vaccines

The CDC recommends COVID-19 vaccination for everyone six months and older. FDA-approved or authorized COVID-19 vaccines currently available to all U.S. citizens and residents are Pfizer-BioNTech-COMIRNATY®, Moderna-Spikevax, and Johnson & Johnson/Janssen.

  • COVID-19 vaccines are safe, effective, and free.
  • Getting the vaccine can reduce the risk of severe disease, hospitalizations and long-term complications for COVID-19.
  • For children, the vaccine can also curb community transmission and reduce disruptions to in-person learning activities.

To learn more, visit the CDC website to get answers to frequently asked questions, see Interim Clinical Considerations, and bust myths about vaccines. Visit the "COVID-19 Vaccine for Children and Teens" page, to learn more about vaccines for children. 

Booster Doses

The CDC recommends the following individuals get an initial COVID-19 booster:

  • People age 18 years and older who received Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccines should receive a 1st booster dose 5 months after dose 2 of the primary series.
  • Children 12 and older who completed the primary series of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine should receive a 1st booster dose 5 months after dose 2 of the primary series.
  • If you received the Janssen COVID-19 vaccine you should get a booster dose 2 months after your initial Janssen dose.

As of May 19, 2022, the CDC recommends that children ages 5-11 receive one booster dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 pediatric vaccine, 5 months after completing their primary series. Children ages 5 through 11 years who are moderately or severely immunocompromised should receive a booster 3 months after completing their primary series.

CDC has also expanded eligibility for an additional (second) booster dose for certain individuals who may be at higher risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19. Visit the CDC website to learn more.

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Last Updated: June 21, 2022

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