Home Census Augusta Health COVID-19 Update: Count Continues to Drop

Augusta Health COVID-19 Update: Count Continues to Drop

Covid19 news
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The current count of COVID-19 hospital patients at Augusta Health is 23, just over a third of what it was six weeks ago.

This allowed the regional hospital to resume functioning as a single intensive care unit and team members to return to their original wards so that elective wards could reopen with a phased approach.

Augusta Health believes that increasing vaccination rates is the best and fastest way out of this pandemic. Please vaccinate, wear masks indoors even if you are vaccinated, wash your hands frequently, and stay socially distant from others when possible. As the winter break approaches and the celebrations unfold indoors, these strategies will become even more important in preventing a further rise in COVID cases.

Eligibility for vaccination

Augusta Health immunizes all people 12 years of age and older who live, work or attend school in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are licensed for people 18 years of age and older. The Pfizer vaccine is authorized for persons 12 years of age and older; a parent or legal guardian must be present to consent to the vaccination of persons under 18 years of age.

Update for children from 5 to 11 years old:

The FDA has recommended approval of the smaller-dose Pfizer vaccine for children aged 5 to 11, and it’s likely the CDC will approve the recommendation this week. Augusta Health plans to open Pfizer vaccination clinics for young children at the end of this week. To ensure patient safety and know the different dosages for this age group, these will be separate clinics for 5-11 year olds only on campus. Again, a parent or legal guardian must be present to consent to the vaccination of persons under the age of 18.

Once vaccinations are approved by the CDC, appointments will be available at vaccinate.augustahealth.com

Booster eligibility information

There are now two groups of previously vaccinated people who can receive booster shots of the third dose of COVID-19.

The first group, approved several weeks ago is:

  • People who are moderately or severely immunocompromised (no proof of a medical problem is required at this time); and that
  • Have already received two doses of Pfizer vaccine or Moderna vaccine; and that
  • They received their second dose of the vaccine more than 28 days ago.

The criteria of the second group, now extended, are a little more complex and are:

For those who have received a Pfizer or Moderna series and who are:

  • 65 and over
  • 18 years and over and living in a long-term care facility
  • 18 years and over and are immunocompromised
  • 18 years and older with underlying medical conditions
  • 18 years and over who work or live in a high risk environment

For those who have received a Johnson & Johnson vaccine and are:

When can you get the callback?

  • At least 6 months after completing your Pfizer or Moderna series
  • If you are immunocompromised and have completed the Pfizer or Moderna series, you can get a 3rd dose in 28 days
  • At least 2 months after Johnson & Johnson vaccination

What booster can you get?

  • You can get the booster you prefer if you meet the above criteria.

Meet at vaccinate.augustahealth.com.

For patient safety reasons, vaccines will be offered on specific days. Be sure to make an appointment for a clinic that offers the vaccine you want. If you sign up for a booster and change your vaccine, make an appointment for the type of booster you want. For example, if you initially received a Pfizer vaccine, but want a Moderna booster, make an appointment at a Moderna clinic.

If you have questions about eligibility, call the Augusta Health Immunization Call Center at (540) 332-5122.

Bring your COVID vaccination record to the reminder appointment.

Vaccinations in primary care offices

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

Community clinics

This week, Augusta Health completed its efforts to deliver vaccines to local long-term care facilities to help immunize residents and staff at those sites. This week, the community vaccination team will begin its efforts to provide boosters and vaccines to other vulnerable populations in shelters, living communities and apartment areas.

Community organizations wishing to partner with Augusta Health for an immunization clinic can contact [email protected] for more information on the requirements.

Large vaccination clinics on campus

Please make an appointment for clinics on campus.

Go to vaccinate.augustahealth.com to see the links and make an appointment. Information about new clinics, links and criteria for each link, are posted as they become available. Clinics on campus this week are:

Tuesday: Pfizer Clinic from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. For the first dose, second dose or Pfizer vaccine booster. The first and second doses of Pfizer vaccine are available for people 12 years of age and older; however, the booster dose is only approved for people 18 years of age and older. Please check the criteria for boosters. The link is open to vaccinate.augustahealth.com.

Wednesday: Moderna and Johnson & Johnson clinic from 9 am to 1 pm For the first dose, the second dose or the booster of Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccines; accessible to people aged 18 and over. Please check the criteria for boosters. The link is open to vaccinate.augustahealth.com

Immunization call center

Not everyone has access to the Internet. Others just have questions. For assistance, call the Augusta Health Immunization Call Center at (540) 332-5122. The call center is open Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to answer questions and help schedule immunization appointments.

Homebound patients are vaccinated as part of a pilot program with Central Shenandoah EMS. Contact the immunization call center for more information.

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