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Augusta Health COVID census holding steady as Omicron surge hits area

omicron
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The current inpatient COVID-19 census at Augusta Health is 19, less than a third of the peak during the late-summer surge associated with the Delta variant.

In the 24 hours preceding 9 a.m. on Monday, 85 new positive cases of COVID were diagnosed at Augusta Health testing sites. The Urgent Cares were closed on Christmas, so the volume reflects the weekend cases.

What we know about the COVID pills

The CDC has announced the approval of two prescription oral antiviral medications, Paxlovid and Molnupiravir, to treat mild to moderate COVID-19. These are not preventive medications, so a positive COVID-19 test will be required before the physician prescribes.

The initial supply of both will be extremely limited, so only a small number of pharmacies will be included in the first shipments. Within the next one to two weeks, the Virginia Department of Health expects to provide a list of pharmacies that will receive the first shipments.

Vaccination eligibility

Augusta Health is vaccinating everyone age 5 and older who lives, works or goes to school in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are authorized for individuals age 18 and over. Pfizer vaccine is authorized for individuals age 5 and older; a parent or legal guardian must be present to consent to vaccination of those under the age of 18. Booster criteria vary by vaccine, so please be aware of the criteria for the vaccine selected.

Children ages 5-11

To ensure patient safety and in awareness of the different dosage for the 5-11 year old age group, there are separate clinics for ages 5-11 only at the on-campus location. Again, a parent or legal guardian must be present to consent to vaccination of those under the age of 18.

Please make appointments at vaccinate.augustahealth.com

Booster eligibility information

Anyone over the age of 16 can receive third-dose COVID-19 booster shots. Eligibility for boosters was expanded to 16- and 17-years olds by the FDA and CDC last week.

When can you get the booster?

At least 6 months after you completed your Pfizer or Moderna series

If you’re immune suppressed and have completed either the Pfizer or Moderna series, you can get a 3rd dose in 28 days

At least 2 months after Johnson & Johnson vaccination

Which booster can you get?

If you are 18 or older, you can get any booster shot you prefer.

If you are 16 or 17 years old, you can get a Pfizer booster.

Make appointments at vaccinate.augustahealth.com.

For patient safety concerns, vaccines will be offered on specific days. Please be sure make an appointment for a clinic that is offering the vaccine you want. If you are registering for a booster, and are switching vaccine, make an appointment for the type of booster you want. For example, if you originally received a Pfizer vaccine, but would like a Moderna booster, make an appointment in a Moderna clinic.

If you have questions about eligibility, please call Augusta Health’s Vaccination Call Center at (540) 332-5122.

Please bring your COVID Vaccination Record Card to the booster appointment.

Vaccinations in Primary Care Offices

Vaccinations for COVID-19 continue in all Augusta Medical Group primary care offices. Patients who prefer to receive a vaccination from their personal physician should contact their doctor’s office to be scheduled into the next available vaccination appointment block.

Community-Based Clinics

This week, the are no community-based clinics scheduled for Augusta Health’s Community Vaccination Team. To date, more than 10,000 vaccines have been administered at clinics within vulnerable communities by the Augusta Health Task Force.

Community organizations that would like to partner with Augusta Health for a Vaccination Clinic can contact VaccinationTaskForce@augustahealth.com for more information on the requirements.

Large on-campus Vaccination Clinics

Please make an appointment for on-campus clinics.

Go to vaccinate.augustahealth.com to view the links and schedule an appointment. Information about new clinics, the links and the criteria for each link, are posted as available. On-campus clinics this week are:

Tuesday: Pfizer Clinic from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for those age 12 and older. For first dose and second dose available to those age 12 and older, booster dose available to those age 16 and older. Please verify criteria before registration. The link is open at vaccinate.augustahealth.com

Tuesday: Moderna and Johnson & Johnson Clinics from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. for those age 18 and older. For first dose and second dose available to those age 12 and older, booster dose available to those age 16 and older. Please verify criteria before registration.

Wednesday: Pfizer Clinic for Ages 5-11 Only from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. This clinic is for those ages 5-11 only. A parent or guardian must be present to consent to vaccination of the child under the age of 18. The link is open at vaccinate.augustahealth.com

The links are open at vaccinate.augustahealth.com

Vaccination Call Center

Not everyone has access to the internet. Others just have questions. For assistance, call Augusta Health’s Vaccination Call Center at (540) 332-5122. The Call Center is staffed Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. to answer questions and help to schedule vaccination appointments.

Homebound patients are being vaccinated through a pilot program with Central Shenandoah EMS. Contact the Vaccination Call Center for more information.


augusta free press
augusta free press