Healthcare Cost

How Much a Tetanus Shot Costs Without Insurance in 2022?

Kendra Bean
Kendra Bean1 Sep 2022

The out-of-pocket cost of a tetanus shot in 2022 ranges from $25 to $60. The vaccine is usually administered as a series of 5 shots during childhood, and a booster shot is recommended every 10 years. A tetanus shot's cost will vary slightly by location and any additional administration fees, but the majority of the time the flat fee you pay will include the service and administration costs.

The Cost of a Tetanus Shot at Different Clinics & Locations

The average cost of a tetanus shot without insurance is typically between $25 to $60. The CDC private sector cost for a tetanus booster ranges from $27.03 to $34.15. However, the price you pay may be higher at some locations due to additional administration fees. These costs were obtained online on GoodRx and may vary depending on the pharmacy you utilize and where you live. Although, location does not play much of a role in the cost of the shot across different major cities. The cheapest tetanus vaccine option was at Rite Aid and Longs Drugs for the Boostrix vaccine. 

You can get a tetanus shot or booster shot just about anywhere as it is considered a routine vaccination. Many will go to a neighborhood clinic or their doctor's office for one. In contrast, some, especially in emergencies where they believe to be experiencing tetanus symptoms, will go to urgent care or the emergency room.

Tetanus Shot Series

As mentioned, the tetanus vaccine is commonly administered in childhood. This takes the form of 5 doses, issued at different time points and followed up by a booster (6th dose) at around age 11 or 12. Then every 10 years, get a Td or Tdap vaccine as a booster shot.

Dose 1

2 months

Dose 2

4 months

Dose 3

6 months 

Dose 4

15 - 18 months

Dose 5

4 - 6 years

Dose 6 (Booster)

11 - 12 years

There are four tetanus vaccines, all of which also protect against other diseases. Some of the vaccines are used exclusively for children and others for adults. The vaccine you receive protects you against either tetanus and diphtheria (DT, Td vaccines), or tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (DTaP, Tdap vaccines). The four vaccines include:

Children (ages 6 and younger):

  • Diphtheria and tetanus (DT) vaccines
  • Diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (DTaP) vaccines

Adults:

  • Tetanus and diphtheria (Td) vaccines
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (Tdap) vaccines

The tetanus shot is a standard immunization that infants and children receive. Most commonly administered is the Tdap booster; this is usually one shot around 11-12 years old. Following that shot, the Tdap booster is recommended every 10 years. The two Tdap vaccines used in the United States are Adacel and Boostrix. There are no generic alternatives to these vaccines.

Common Tdap Booster Shot Costs at Major Pharmacies in Major Cities

Store

Cities

Adacel

Boostrix


 

Walgreens

New York City, NY

Chicago, IL

Washington, DC

San Antonio, TX

Los Angeles, CA


 

$63.49


 

$56.23


 


 

Walmart


 

New York City, NY Chicago, IL 
Washington, DC

San Antonio, TX

Los Angeles, CA


 

$65.21


 

$61.51


 

CVS Pharmacy

New York City, NY Chicago, IL 
Washington, DC

San Antonio, TX

Los Angeles, CA


 

$58.66


 

$50.71


 

Safeway


 

Washington, DC

Los Angeles, CA


 


 

$57.45


 

$51.81


 

Rite Aid

New York City, NY 
Washington, DC

Los Angeles, CA


 


 

$52.00


 

$48.00


 

Longs Drugs


 

New York City, NY


 


 

$52.00


 

$48.00


 

Costco

Chicago, IL 
Washington, DC

San Antonio, TX

Los Angeles, CA


 


 

$57.05


 

$51.38

Source: GoodRx

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Low-Cost Options Without Insurance

The cost of the vaccine or booster is relatively low, considering it is only needed once every 10 years. However, there are ways to reduce this cost to an even more affordable price. There are coupons available for the tetanus vaccine that can be found on many sites. Specifically, Mira Rx allows its members to receive discounted prices on prescriptions and vaccines, including the Tdap booster. Within your member portal, click on the "Rx Discounts" tile; enter the tetanus prescription's name, and choose your location. Pharmacies carrying your medication will populate with the lowest option shown first. Click on "Get Coupon" and start saving money on prescriptions today with Mira Rx.

Adacel and Boostrix offer patient assistance programs for their tetanus vaccines, granted you meet the eligibility requirements. Patient assistance programs are based on household income and can astronomically lower prescriptions cost. Low-cost routine vaccinations or booster shots are sometimes offered at public clinics and county health departments..

The U.S. The Department of Health and Human Services also offers a public clinic locator by zip code and many health informational resources related to tetanus. The CDC also recommends Shot Nurse as a way to locate tetanus vaccines and also orchestrate group vaccination. The organization is based and operates in Tennessee but also has great resources online regarding the tetanus vaccine. 

Tetanus

Tetanus is a nervous system disease known to cause muscle contractions, specifically of your jaw and neck muscles. It is also commonly referred to as "lockjaw." The condition is caused by a toxin-producing bacterium that can get into your body through:

  • Wounds contaminated with dirt, poop, or spit
  • Wounds caused by an object puncturing the skin (puncture wounds) (eg. nail or needle)
  • Burns
  • Crush injuries
  • Injuries with dead tissue
  • Dental Infections
  • Insect Bites

The tetanus-causing bacteria are found everywhere in the environment. One becomes infected with tetanus when the bacteria enters the body. The time between exposure to illness is believed to be 3 to 21 days, with an average of 10 days. The best way to prevent tetanus is to be vaccinated, and therefore, protected against the disease. Another great form of prevention is proper wound care. Tending to any wounds immediately and thoroughly can prevent the development of tetanus. 

Cost of a Tetanus Shot Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Consider this additional information when it comes to the cost of a tetanus shot without insurance in 2022. 

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What Are the Symptoms of Tetanus?

The most common symptom of tetanus is the tightening of your jaw muscles. This is usually the first sign of infection. Other symptoms include painful muscle stiffness all over the body, trouble swallowing, seizures, fever, and changes in blood pressure and heart rate. 

Are There Any Reasons I Should Not Get the Tdap Booster?

Your medical history should always be discussed with the health care professional administering your vaccine. It has been noted that you should talk to your doctor prior to receiving the vaccine if you:

  • Had a life-threatening allergic reaction, or severe pain or swelling after a dose of any tetanus, diphtheria, or pertussis-containing vaccine, or any part of this vaccine
  • Have epilepsy or another nervous system problem
  • Ever had Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS)
  • Are experiencing moderate-to-severe illness

What Are Other Routine Vaccinations Like the Tetanus Shot?

Routine vaccinations refer to vaccinations that are recommended to everyone in the United States but are also dependent on age and vaccination history. The majority of routine vaccinations take place in childhood, but there are routine vaccinations for adolescents and adults. Some other routine vaccinations include COVID-19, Chickenpox, Hepatitis A and B, HPV, Flu, Polio, Shingles, etc.

Bottom Line

The cost of a tetanus shot in 2022 ranges from $25 to $60, usually including the facility and administration fee. However, it is important to check with the facility you are receiving the vaccination from to take note of any additional costs. The best way to prevent tetanus is to be vaccinated. Once receiving the initial series in childhood, you only need the Tdap booster once every 10 years, which can make the out-of-pocket cost seem relatively affordable and worth it.

If you’re not sure where to get your tetanus vaccine, the Mira care navigation team helps members find affordable options in their area. Membership is just $45 per month and gives exclusive access to low-cost urgent care visits, affordable lab testing, and discounted prescriptions. Sign up today and start saving!

Kendra Bean

Kendra Bean is from Maui, Hawaiʻi. She is currently enrolled at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, specializing in Epidemiology. She is passionate about improving health literacy and access to care, specifically in rural areas.