COVID-19 Vaccines

Know what to expect when getting a vaccine, when it will be available, and how it was developed and approved. 

Trauma acknowledgment

The City of Minneapolis wants to give you the most up-to-date information. We want to listen to you and get your concerns and recommendations. We want to build relationships that help to heal the trauma of past experiences. We want to work with you to build trust and equitable health outcomes. 
We acknowledge that this has been an especially stressful and painful year. The loss of loved ones, jobs, businesses, homes and livelihoods has been an enormous weight for us all. Many of you have also suffered from years of disinvestment, biased treatment and lack of access. These experiences have reinforced cycles of trauma and created a lack of trust towards government and health care. 
The decision to vaccinate or not, is a very personal one. We empathize with those who have historically or personally experienced discriminatory treatment. The work we are doing to educate and gather information from the community on vaccination is with these important truths in mind. 

Vaccine survey

The survey is closed. 

Thank you to everyone who responded. We are reviewing and processing the results. Your responses and comments will inform the Minneapolis Health Department's plan for an equitable and effective community vaccination plan.


Print COVID-19 FAQs (PDF)

Print COVID-19 Vaccine distribution (PDF)

Print COVID-19 Vaccine development (PDF)

Visit the Centers for Disease Control - Vaccines

Vaccine safety

A vaccine must be safe and effective for the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) to approve it. The FDA reviews vaccine research and testing before approving a vaccine.

What to expect

When you get a COVID-19 vaccine you should expect:

Vaccine phased distribution

The first COVID-19 vaccines will be available in Dec. 2020.

Vaccines are being distributed in a phased approach.

  1. Phase 1 includes healthcare workers as well as long term care staff and residents. Additional phase 1 groups are other critical workers, such as firefighters, and folks at higher risk for severe COVID-19 disease.
  2. Phase 2 will continue to focus on critical populations and begin to distribute to the general population.
  3. Phase 3 will reach the full general public so that anyone and everyone who wants a vaccine will have access. For more information about groups and phases:

Explore the COVID-19 Vaccination Program Interim Playbook (PDF)

Find federal information on COVID-19 vaccines

COVID-19 Vaccine distribution timeline

The COVID-19 vaccine will be distributed in phases. Here are the vaccine distribution phases and expected availability.*

Potential Timeline for Distribution

Phase 1A - Dec 2020: Distribution will focus on healthcare workers and long-term care residents.

Phase 1B - 1st quarter 2021: Distribution will focus on other critical workers.

Phase 1C - End of 1st quarter 2021: Distribution will focus on adults with high-risk medical conditions and people 65 and older.

Phase 2 - 2nd and 3rd quarter 2021: Vaccine distribution will have a continued focus on critical populations and general population.

Phase 3 - 3rd quarter 2021 and after: Distribution will focus on the general population.

*Note: This timeline is dependent upon vaccine approval and availability. All time frames are estimated and subject to change.

Additional Information

Print COVID-19 Vaccine distribution (PDF)

Vaccine effectiveness

To be approved, a vaccine must be effective. The FDA requires that any vaccine be greater than 50% effective at preventing COVID-19. The vaccines currently approved are about 95% effective. 

COVID-19 Vaccine development and approval

Researchers and medical experts worked together in new ways, devoting resources and funding to quickly develop safe and effective vaccines.

The vaccine approval process includes multiple phases of testing and approval.

Pre-clinical testing: A new vaccine is first tested on cells. Then it is given to animals, like mice or monkeys, to see if it works.

Phase 1 safety trials: The vaccine is given to a small number of people. This is to test for safety and dosage. It also confirms that the vaccine works on humans.

Phase 2 expanded trials: The vaccine is given to hundreds of people. It is tested in different populations, like age groups. This shows if the vaccine works differently between groups. Safety is a top priority.

Phase 3 efficacy trials: The vaccine is given to thousands of people. There are two groups. One receives the vaccine, and the other does not. After time, the groups are compared to see if the vaccine works to prevent disease.

Approval: The results are reviewed. If the vaccine is safe and effective, it is approved.

Print COVID-19 Vaccine 101 (PDF)

Vaccine questions

Do you have questions about vaccines? Email [email protected] or contact Minneapolis 311 a6 612-673-3000. 

Last updated Jan 4, 2021



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