If the COVID-19 Vaccine is free, why are you being asked to show your health insurance card?

We ask for your insurance card because, we can be reimbursed an administration fee, paid by your insurance company, to help cover the cost of setting up the clinic, storing the vaccine, and all the data and record keeping the federal government requires for every vaccine that is administered.

Congress has ruled that insurance company’s CANNOT pass along the charges to the consumer. If someone try’s to charge you for the vaccine, don’t pay it.

Those persons who do not have insurance, the fee is covered by the Provider Relief Fund.

It might help to think about when you receive your flu, pneumonia, or shingles vaccine. Your insurance covers the cost of the administration fee associated with those vaccines as well.

We want to assure you that you will not receive a bill for your COVID-19 vaccine.
And, we want to say “THANK YOU” for helping North Carolina move forward in this pandemic.



Photo of cars in lines ready to receive the COVID vaccine.

The COVID-19 Vaccination Schedule for Rutherford County, North Carolina

Beginning Tuesday, May 4, 2021, anyone in need of a first dose COVID Vaccine can visit the Rutherford County Health Department (221 Callahan Koon Rd. Spindale, NC) on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 9am-4pm. Vaccine services will be provided through our immunization department. No appointment needed

Vaccine is currently available for anyone over the age of 18*.   18 years old is the minimum age for the Moderna vaccine.  You do not need to be a resident of Rutherford County to visit our vaccine clinic.  

Please make note of the location for the vaccine clinic should the vaccination site be relocated.  Do not arrive more than 15 minutes prior to the start of the clinic.  Do not impede or block roadways.

Wednesday May 12 @  Rutherford County Health Department 
9-11 AM, no afternoon clinic
Second Doses Only

Wednesday May 19 @ Rutherford County Health Department
9-11 AM and 1-3 PM
Second Doses Only

Wednesday May 26 @ Rutherford County Health Department
9-11 AM, no afternoon clinic
Second Doses Only






The cost for a screening or a TB skin test required for employment or school is $25. There is no charge if the client is symptomatic for TB or has been determined to be a contact with someone with active TB. For a client with a positive skin test, a Public Health Nurse will offer counseling, chest X-rays, medical referrals, contact tracing and testing, and provide medication if applicable. Tuberculosis Control Services are provided at no cost to the client.


Clinic visits are by appointment only. If you do not have an appointment please contact one of our offices.  The tests are administered on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The client is required to return to the Clinic 72 hours after the skin test is placed to be evaluated by a nurse. Tuberculosis skin tests are most accurate at 72 hours after administration.

**Please note: We cannot give you a live vaccine within 28 days of a TB test unless they were given on the same day.

Appointments at McDowell County Health Department

(828) 652-6811 ext 382

Appointments at Rutherford County Health Department

(828) 287-6100 option #2

Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) Clinic

A sexually transmitted disease (STD) also known as sexually transmitted infection (STI), is a disease passed from person to person through sexual contact. Learn more about common STDs.

The health department provides confidential testing, diagnosis, treatment, counseling and reports sexually transmitted diseases. Services are confidential.

STD Clinic: Appointments are available for people with symptoms of sexually transmitted infections & those who report being a contact to someone with a sexually transmitted infection.


STD Clinic visits are by appointment only.

If you do not have an appointment, please call your local Foothills Health District Office.

McDowell County Residents please call (828) 652-6811 extension 382
Rutherford County Residents please call (828) 287-6100 option #2


To learn more about common Sexually Transmitted Diseases please visit:

Appointments at McDowell County Health Department

(828) 652-6811 ext 382

Appointments at Rutherford County Health Department

(828) 287-6100 option #2

Vacancy Announcement


Salary Grade:


Salary Range:

$30,693 – $39,902 – $49,110

Closing Date:

Open until filled

Position Number:



Rutherford County

Description of Work:

• Provides Emergency Community Preparedness, OSHA oversight/training and HIPAA compliance for Public Health employees in the Foothills District and protection and assurance for those counties when appropriate.
• Collaborates with professionals in each county for the development of preparedness plans and other related job functions.
• Facilitates training for employees and others in person, coordinates webinars, and written communication in collaboration with relevant public health personnel.
• Coordinates and conducts EPI meetings and fit testing.

Minimum Education And Experience:

A four year degree in public service administration, psychology, sociology, or social work or a human service programmatic field, preferably with coursework in human service planning; or graduation from a four-year college or university and two years of administrative or consultative experience in human service program; or an equivalent combination of education and/or experience.

Necessary Special Qualifications:

General knowledge of the principles and practices of public administration and planning an ability to communicate effectively with professional and administrative personnel; and an ability to exercise judgment and discretion in applying and interpreting policies and procedures.


Application Process:

To apply for this position, submit the required NC state application (PD-107) to the Foothill Health District Personnel Department, 221 Callahan-Koon Road, Spindale, NC 28160. Applications can be downloaded at www.foothillshd.org. Completed applications and resumes can be e-mailed to personnel@foothillshd.org or faxed to (828) 287-6059. Equal Opportunity Employer








COVID-19 Vaccination Team Members prepare to give vaccinations

January 27, 2021

RUTHERFORD COUNTY, NC – This past weekend the Foothills Health District, along with Emergency Management provided over 800 vaccines at the Rutherford County Health Department. This appointment only clinic was possible with the collaboration and partnerships with outside agencies and volunteers. The team work shown among all these individuals allowed our community to get the much needed COVID19 vaccine. Thank you to Public Health, Rutherford County Emergency Management, Rutherford County Emergency Services, McDowell County Emergency Services and many amazing volunteers. A true testimony of caring for the community! We would like to thank the community for their continued patience, kind words and support as we maneuver this ever changing emergency response to COVID19.    




2021 Holiday Schedule

New Year’s Day January 1, 2021    Friday
Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday January 18, 2021 Monday
Good Friday April 2, 2021 Friday
Memorial Day May 31, 2021 Monday
Independence Day July 5, 2021 Monday
Labor Day September 6, 2021 Monday
Veterans Day November 11, 2021 Thursday
Thanksgiving November 25 & 26, 2021 Thursday & Friday
Christmas December 23, 24 & 27, 2021 Thursday, Friday & Monday

CDC COVID-19 Fact Sheet (Spanish)

The Centers for Disease Control Fact Sheet for COVID-19 (PDF File, Spanish)


 CDC COVID-19 Fact Sheet (Simplified CHinese)

The Centers for Disease Control Fact Sheet for COVID-19 (PDF File, Simplified Chinese)


McDowell County Emergency Management has opened a medical screening hotline for those who think they may have been exposed to the virus or if you are experiencing a fever, please call (828) 527-6687. The operator will ask a list of screening questions and will provide the caller with the appropriate medical instructions based upon the answers given.  Open from 8am until 8pm.

Please do not call the medical screening hotline for general information.



The Centers for Disease Control Website is a reputable website with up-to-date information



The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Website is a reputable website with up-to-date information

Rutherford Regional Hospital

Information from Rutherford Regional Hospital is another reputable website with up-to-date information


McDowell Cares

The McDowell Cares website will bring together faith based organizations, community resources and information during times of local crisis.


McDowell County Emergency Management has opened a non-emergency call center for questions concerning COVID-19 (Coronavirus)  

The number for the COVID-19 Hotline is (828) 559-9683.  The hours are from 8am until 8pm.

CDC COVID-19 Fact Sheet (English)

The Centers for Disease Control Fact Sheet for COVID-19 (PDF File, English)

CDC COVID-19 Fact Sheet (Spanish)

The Centers for Disease Control Fact Sheet for COVID-19 (PDF File, Spanish)


 CDC COVID-19 Fact Sheet (Simplified CHinese)

The Centers for Disease Control Fact Sheet for COVID-19 (PDF File, Simplified Chinese)


(828) 803-4552
Monday – Friday
8:30am – 5:00pm

Rutherford Help

The Community Health Council of Rutherford County has launched the website www.Rutherfordhelp.com. It provides Rutherford County citizens access to vital and timely information regarding Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). You can find access to resources, volunteer to help, find the medical screening hotline, and find all the latest news and information.


Monday – Friday
8:30am – 5:00pm

Heading Level 4


Legionnaires’ Disease Can Cause Pneumonia Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of Legionnaires’ disease can include:
► Cough
► Muscle aches
► Fever
► Shortness of breath
► Headache

Doctors use chest x-rays or physical exams to check for pneumonia. Your doctor may also order tests on a sample of urine and sputum (phlegm) to see if your
lung infection is caused by Legionella.

Legionnaires’ Disease Is Serious, but Can Be Treated
with Antibiotics

Legionnaires’ disease is treated with antibiotics (drugs that kill bacteria in the body). Most people who get sick need care in a hospital but make a full recovery.  However, about 1 out of 10 people who get Legionnaires’ disease will die from the infection.

Certain People Are at Increased Risk for
Legionnaires’ Disease

Most healthy people do not get Legionnaires’ disease after being exposed to Legionella. Being 50 years or older or having certain risk factors can increase your chances of getting sick. These risk factors include:
► Being a current or former smoker
► Having chronic lung disease, such as emphysema or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
► Having a weakened immune system from diseases like cancer, diabetes, or kidney failure
► Taking medication that weakens your immune system

Legionella Are Usually Spread through Water Droplets
in the Air
In nature, Legionella live in fresh water and rarely cause illness. In man-made settings, Legionella can grow if water is not properly maintained. These manmade
water sources become a health problem when small droplets of water that contain the bacteria get into the air and people breathe them in. In rare cases, someone breathes in Legionella while they are drinking water and it “goes down the wrong pipe” into the lungs. In general, people do not spread Legionnaires’ disease to other people.

To learn more visit: https://www.cdc.gov/legionella/index.html

Legionnaires’ (LEE-juh-nares) disease is a very serious type of pneumonia (lung infection) caused by bacteria called Legionella. If you develop pneumonia symptoms and may have been exposed to Legionella, see a doctor right away. Be sure to mention if you have used a hot tub, spent any nights away from home, or stayed in a hospital in the last two weeks.

Graphic from CDC showing 9 in 10 outbreaks were caused by problems preventable with more effective water management.





Source: Centers for Disease Control