COVID-19 Vaccine Experiences from Asheville Neurology Staff Members

Post by Nikki Madle, Administrative Operations ManagerAsheville Neurology Specialists

Many of our staff members have either received the first or second COVID-19 vaccine or are scheduled to receive them in the next few weeks. This post is dedicated to providing more information to our patients and community about how the process works from our own experience so far. The information about the vaccine comes from the CDC, the NC Department of Health and Human Services, the Buncombe County Health Department.
Asheville Neurology WILL NOT  be providing the vaccine at our office.
All of us that have received the vaccine so far received it offsite. You will need to go through the local health department in order to get your own vaccine scheduled. In some places, you will be able to get the vaccine at Primary Care Office or a local pharmacy as well.
The information in this post is specific to NC and Buncombe County, so it will be important to contact your own local health department for information about their process. When it is your time to get the shot, you will be able to sign up at this link. Buncombe County is currently vaccinating Group 1A: individuals who are 65 and older as well as  Group 1B, healthcare workers.
Once you sign up to receive the vaccine, they will work down the waitlist (in order of when you signed up for the vaccine) and call you to schedule. Because of the large number of individuals on the waitlist and the limited number of staff members within the Buncombe County Health Department, You will only receive 2 calls to schedule before you are moved to the END of the waitlist, so be sure to add this number (828) 419-0095 to your phone so you answer the phone call and don’t lose your spot.

Once they call you to schedule, you will be given an appointment and vaccine site location. They will tell you to bring your ID and Insurance but neither is required for you to get the vaccine.

Many of us received our vaccines at the AB-Tech Vaccine site so the rest of this information is specific to that site.

In regards to COVID-19 safety protocols at this specific site, we are excited to report that each of our staff members experiences so far have been as efficient and as safe as they probably could have made it. All waiting areas were spaced out so that no individual was too close to another. Every person wore a mask throughout the entire experience. After each person got up from a chair, a volunteer moved in to sanitize the seat before another sat down.


  • When you arrive they will ask you for your name and appointment time in order to verify your appointment.  You will then be sent to a volunteer, who will ask for your name/address/birthdate/and a phone number or email (that they will use to remind you about your second vaccine). If you brought your ID and Insurance info they will just obtain it from those documents. They will also give you a vaccine info card which your nurse will fill out later in the process.
  •  Next you will proceed to another waiting area where you will fill in your demographic info and  a questionnaire about allergies.  You will also sign a consent to receive the vaccine.
  • Next, they will review your questionnaire and send you to a nurse station. If you do have allergies, they may have a doctor talk with you to get more information about those allergies prior to getting the injection and you will likely wait for a longer period of time in observation just to make sure everything is okay.
  •  Many of us in our office have agreed that it’s less painful than an annual flu shot and a few report not feeling the injection at all.
  • Once you get the injection, they will give you your appointment date and location for your second vaccine dose. It is important to keep this appointment and proceed with the vaccine as scheduled (unless your primary care provider says otherwise) as the first dose brings you to about 45-48 percent immunity against COVID-19 and the second brings it closer to 90-96 percent.  Of course these percentages vary depending on which vaccine you are getting as well as your individual immune system.
  • Your second injection will likely be a drive-through (like some COVID-19 testing sites) at a different location. They will tell you for sure when you get your first injection.
  • After the injection, they have you wait in the observation area for 15 minutes. If you have had any allergies to immunizations in the past, they will likely make you wait longer just to be safe.
  • After the 15-30 minutes are up, you get to leave and go on with your day! In our experience, It’s quick, efficient and relatively painless.

Even after receiving both vaccines it will be important for us to continue to practice social distancing and mask use for at least a while longer, as our population begins to build herd immunity to COVID-19. This will only happen after a certain percentage of individuals get the COVID-19 Vaccine.


If your curious to know about the side effects our staff experienced with the vaccine injections, the majority of individuals only felt a little soreness at the injection site that was present for a day or two after the first injection. Some also felt fatigue/or a slight headache.

The second injection has caused some of our staff members to feel feverish/tired/achy, but this resolved within a few days as well. These staff members all agreed that these symptoms were well worth it, in order to avoid getting COVID-19 and all the complications that come with that for 2+ weeks.


Ultimately the decision is yours to make. We recommend consulting with your Allergist/Primary Care Provider in order to determine whether or not the vaccine will be safe for you. To read Asheville Neurology’s Position Statement on the COVID-19 Vaccine, you can check out our previous blog post here: COVID-19 Vaccine Statement.