COVID-19 Vaccine | How It Works - Genesis Health System

How does the COVID-19 vaccine work?

Vaccines are medicine used to boost your body’s immune system to prevent disease. COVID-19 vaccines are designed to trigger an antibody that helps your body prevent illness caused by COVID-19. 

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COVID-19 Community Vaccination Plan: Week of March 1, 2021

Genesis is "in this together" with our patients and partner health care organizations to get our community vaccinated against COVID-19 as quickly as our vaccine supply allows.

Our plan is to keep you informed, so watch our website and social media for weekly Genesis updates and information regarding the vaccine.

Vaccinations will take months. The vaccine supply to the states and counties will determine how soon your vaccination is scheduled in the coming weeks. Although our initial vaccine supply has been limited, we are optimistic this supply will continue to increase every week. Across the nation, demand for the vaccine has far outpaced vaccine supply. Please be patient and know we have a plan to get you vaccinated.

1B Patients: 65+ and Older Current Call to Action for the week March 1, 2021

Genesis Health System Patients and those without a provider:

  • At this time, there is nothing for you to do if you are a patient with a Genesis primary care provider. You DO NOT need to call your provider’s office. Genesis providers have ordered vaccinations for all their 1B: 65 and older patients. There is no pre-registration to receive the COVID-19 vaccine through Genesis. Once vaccination supply is received, Genesis will contact you to schedule your appointment.

  • If you see a Genesis specialist/partner such as an oncologist, pulmonologist, etc., they are also placing vaccine orders for their 1B 65+ population.

  • Genesis will contact you to schedule your vaccine, as we continue to receive vaccine from the health departments.

  • For those 1B 65+ patients who do not have a Genesis provider, we can connect you with a provider by calling 563-421-DOCS (3627) OR you can contact CASI at 563-386-7477 to get scheduled for a vaccination. Seniors who have already called CASI for assistance do not need to call again. CASI will be in contact regarding next steps. We are working with CASI to vaccinate those without a provider.

  • Second Dose: At this time, Genesis is only giving second dose, if the first dose was received from Genesis. Genesis schedules your second dose appointment when you come for your first dose appointment. If you received a first dose through the health department, we recommend you receive your second dose at the same location of your first, due to state allocation.

1B: Essential Workers

  • If you are eligible as a 1B essential worker based on your employment or occupation, we encourage you to work with your employer and monitor communications from state health departments at Iowa|Illinois

  • We are collaborating with county health departments to determine how best to get you scheduled and vaccinated, once vaccination supply is received.

  • The number of eligible people we can vaccinate depends on the number of vaccine doses we receive from the local health departments, which varies by state and county.

At-Risk Illinoisan Vaccine Opportunities

Effective February 25, the Illinois Department of Public Health is opening vaccine opportunities to Illinoisans with certain underlying health conditions, including:

    • Cancer
    • Chronic Kidney Disease
    • COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
    • Diabetes
    • Heart Condition
    • Immunocompromised State from a Solid Organ Transplant
    • Obesity
    • Pregnancy
    • Pulmonary Disease
    • Sickle Cell Disease

While this is good news for people with serious health conditions, this does not change the fact that vaccine supply is very limited. Genesis primary care providers with these at-risk Illinois patients will place an order for vaccination, similar to how the 65+ population has been handled.


State and local public health departments announce those community groups who currently are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccination. Keep up on eligible vaccine populations here: Iowa|Illinois

1A: Health Care Personnel and Residents of Long-Term Care Facilities: Vaccination for this population began at Genesis on December 15, 2020. Genesis was the first to vaccinate in the Quad Cities. We are now winding down with this population and focusing efforts on the 1B population.

Health Department Information

      • Scott County Residents: Visit Here for information on how you can register for vaccination with Scott County Health Department. 

      • Rock Island County Residents: Visit Here for information on how you can register for vaccination with Rock Island County Health Department.
        • Alternatives for Older Adults also will be assisting RI County residents who do not have the ability to register online for their vaccination. The toll-free number is 1-833-382-1314. The number will be open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday.
      • Clinton County Residents: Visit their Facebook page or website for information on vaccine.

      • Mercer County Residents: Visit their Facebook page for information on vaccine.

      • Jackson County Residents: Visit their website for information on vaccine.


Genesis COVID Vaccinations Infographic

Previous Vaccination Data

     February 18, 2021

Vaccination Report | 2/18/2021

     February 11, 2021

Vaccination Report | 2/11/2021

     February 1, 2021

Vaccination Report | 2/1/2021

Get the latest information.

Tell me more about the COVID-19 vaccines and how they work.

Do the vaccines use the live virus that causes COVID-19?

The vaccine does not contain live or dead virus. It contains genetic material called mRNA. It is synthetic mRNA made in the laboratory. It contains instructions for a protein known as S protein.

This mRNA is enclosed in a lipid envelope in the vaccine. Once the vaccine is given, it is taken up by cells. Inside the cytoplasm, mRNA is released from its envelope. Then mRNA makes S protein. This S protein then incites immune response from body. The vaccine recipient makes antibody against this S protein which helps to provide immunity against COVID-19

Will the vaccines change my DNA?

DNA resides in the nucleus of cell. mRNA never enters the nucleus of cell. The cell breaks down and gets rid of the mRNA soon after it does its job.

Do the vaccines coming out first use fetal cells in production?

Fetal cells are not used in the production of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine or the Moderna vaccine.

What if I already have had COVID-19? Do I still need to get the vaccine?

According to preliminary data, the vaccine produces a more robust response as compared to natural infection. Therefore, the vaccine can increase your protection from the virus. Current recommendation is to give the vaccine even after COVID-19 infection, unless there is shortage of vaccine. If there is shortage, people recovering from COVID-19 infection can defer the vaccine up to 90 days.

Related Topics

The vaccines are safe.
How can I get the vaccine?