COVID-19 Vaccines

Last updated: February 19, 2021

COVID-19 Vaccination Update

Northwestern Medicine has invited established patients 65 years and older to schedule a vaccination appointment. However, due to reduced supplies, first dose vaccination appointments are limited. Additional appointments will be added as vaccine supply becomes available.

Second dose appointments are available for those who have received their first dose from Northwestern Medicine and will be scheduled at the time of the initial dose.

Please do not call your physician’s office for vaccine-related appointments. Vaccines are currently only available at Northwestern Medicine hospitals.

We encourage you to sign up for MyNM if you are not already enrolled. Your invitation will come through email if you have a MyNM account. If you do not have a MyNM account, you will be contacted by your preferred communication method — phone call, text message or email.

Scheduling Your Vaccine

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Notification

Patients will be contacted when they are eligible by:

  • Email if they have a MyNM account. If they do not have an account, one may be established here.

  • Phone, text message or email in the same way they receive appointment reminders.
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Scheduling 1st Dose

When you are contacted, you will receive further instructions regarding scheduling online.

  • You can schedule via your MyNM account.

  • If you do not have a MyNM account, your invitation will include an access code and a link to a website to use for scheduling.
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Scheduling 2nd Dose

Depending on the vaccine received, patients must be available for a second dose either 21 or 28 days after the date of the first dose.

Your second dose will be scheduled when you receive your first dose.

COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ


Vaccine Scheduling

For the purposes of this phase of the vaccination program, a patient is considered established if they have a Northwestern Medicine primary care physician or regularly see a Northwestern Medicine specialist. The patient must have had a visit with their physician within the past 18 months.

Northwestern Medicine is now sending invitations to eligible patients 65 and older to schedule vaccination. Invitations are being sent in phases, by hospital location, to ensure we can accommodate all patients in a timely and efficient manner. Eligibility is based on criteria established in the state of Illinois vaccination plan, available here. Illinois is now in Phase 1B, which includes front-line essential workers and those age 65 and older. Note that this plan may change quickly at any time.

No, there is not a list to sign up for a COVID-19 vaccine from Northwestern Medicine. All established Northwestern Medicine patients who meet current state and local guidelines for a vaccine will be invited to schedule an appointment for vaccination. Once you receive an invitation, you can choose whether to schedule an appointment.

If you have seen a Northwestern Medicine primary care or specialty care physician via a telehealth visit and meet other established patient criteria, you are considered an established patient. However, if you have only been to an Immediate Care Center or Emergency Department, you are not considered established.

Northwestern Medicine is identifying and proactively contacting patients who are eligible to schedule COVID-19 vaccination appointments. We are following federal, state and local guidelines throughout this process. Patients are contacted through their preferred communication method: email, text message and/or phone call. You can update your contact information and preferences through the MyNM patient portal at nm.org/mynm.

If you receive a communication from Northwestern Medicine about scheduling, please make your appointment as soon as possible, following the instructions given. This allows us to efficiently use all doses of the COVID-19 vaccine that we receive. You can make an appointment for vaccination at any Northwestern Medicine facility that is available at the time of scheduling.

We will continue to contact established Northwestern Medicine patients and update this page with new information.

Upon scheduling, you will see a list of available vaccine clinic locations. Once you select a location, you will be provided with instructions on where to go for your appointment.

If you have a MyNM account (formerly known as MyChart), you will receive a notification in your email. If you do not have a MyNM account, we will contact you the same way you receive your appointment reminders — by phone, text message or email.

Northwestern Medicine patients who receive an invitation are encouraged to open and use their MyNM account to schedule their vaccination appointment. You can find instructions to set up a MyNM account here. If you do not have a MyNM account, your invitation will include an access code and a link to a website to use for scheduling. Once you enter the access code, you will be able to select the date, time and location of your vaccination appointment. Please note that the access code is for one-time use and is unique to you.

If you have questions about scheduling your COVID-19 vaccine appointment once you’ve received an invitation, please call the COVID-19 Vaccine Hotline at 312.694.6600 (TTY: 711).

You will not be able to reschedule the appointment online. If you need to reschedule, please call 312.694.6600 (TTY: 711).

We are following specific criteria for scheduling established Northwestern Medicine patients based on available vaccine doses. If your spouse or family member meets that criteria, they will receive a separate invitation to schedule. Your invitation is only for you.

Northwestern Medicine continues to invite and prioritize established patients based on age and those living in high-hardship ZIP codes that have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. High-hardship ZIP codes are defined by a variety of indicators and conditions, including unemployment, poverty, per capita income, housing, education and the dependency and care of a child younger than 18 or adult older than 64.

Patients who regularly see a physician who is part of the Northwestern Medicine Physician Network (NMPN) are eligible to be invited for a COVID-19 vaccination.

Since vaccine supply remains limited, you are encouraged to schedule an appointment at designated vaccination sites. Use the following links to find locations near you:

Many Illinois counties now have information or registration forms for the public to subscribe to vaccination updates, including the following in Chicagoland:

You can also find a full list of vaccine sites for the State of Illinois.

Federal, state and local governments continue to refine plans for vaccination, including eligibility decisions and availability of doses. At this time, vaccine supply is still limited. Eventually, there will be enough vaccine doses for everyone who chooses to be vaccinated.

Northwestern Medicine is currently focused on vaccinating patients 65 and older. Front-line essential workers are encouraged to register for COVID-19 vaccination at a community-based vaccination clinic. For example, health departments and pharmacies are now offering the vaccine, and the Illinois National Guard will run large vaccination clinics in Cook County.

Front-line essential workers include:

  • First responders
  • Educators, including teachers, principals and school support staff
  • Child care workers
  • Homeless shelter staff
  • Grocery store employees
  • United States Postal Service employees
  • Public transit workers
  • Food and agriculture workers, such as those who work in processing plants
  • Veterinary employees
  • Corrections workers and inmates
  • Those who work in manufacturing

For vaccination at an Illinois National Guard site, you must schedule an appointment on the Cook County Community Vaccination Program website.

A comprehensive list of Illinois vaccination locations can be found on the State of Illinois Vaccination Location web page. You can search for locations by city or ZIP code. You may need to fill out information verifying that you are eligible for an appointment, and bring proof of eligibility to the appointment.

Preparing for Your Vaccine Appointment 

If you make your appointment through MyNM, you will find your appointment details there. If you do not have a MyNM account, you will receive an email confirmation with the appointment details after scheduling.

No. Northwestern Medicine offers both the Pfizer-BioNTech and the Moderna vaccines. We cannot control how many doses of each vaccine we receive, so your vaccine type will depend on what is available on the day you come for your appointment. Your second dose will be the same vaccine as your first.

Yes, please bring an ID and your insurance card. There will be no out-of-pocket cost to be vaccinated.

Please wear a short-sleeved shirt or clothing that provides easy access to the upper arm.

At your appointment, you will be given instructions on how to access your vaccination record via MyNM.

Second Dose Information 

We will schedule you for your second appointment when you receive your first dose.

Please contact the number that was provided in your invitation to schedule your second dose.

The vaccine supply from the CDC and local health departments is based on the number of people who need the second dose of the vaccine. Please make every effort to keep your scheduled appointment. If you cannot, please call the number that was provided in your invitation to discuss your options.

The second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine should be given as close to the recommended date as possible. However, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, if you must delay your second appointment, the second dose of either the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine may be given up to 6 weeks (42 days) after the first dose. If you need to change the date of your second appointment, please call 312.694.6600.

No. We ask that all patients ensure they can go to the same location for both doses when scheduling their first appointment. This is because we cannot guarantee that the same type of vaccine you received for your first dose will be available at another location.

Yes. You will need to complete your 10-day quarantine period before you receive the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. If you need to reschedule your appointment, please call the hotline number that was provided in your invitation.