Don’t Let Your Guard Down!
The race is on between the Covid-19 virus and efforts to vaccinate against the virus. The number of Covid-19 cases in Montgomery County declined steadily following a peak in January of this year. Unfortunately, the number of cases has been increasing gradually in recent weeks. This is a reminder that the virus is still spreading in our community and it is important to continue practicing Covid safety measures in public including wearing a mask, social distancing and hand hygiene (even if you have been vaccinated).
Efforts to get shots into arms nationally and in Maryland are gaining speed. Currently, 2.4 million Covid vaccine doses have been administered in Maryland and over 850,000 Marylanders are fully vaccinated. Epidemiologists tell us that we will not be able to stop the spread of the virus until we reach ‘herd immunity’, meaning 70% or more of the population is vaccinated. Since there are 6 million Marylanders we still have a ways to go. But there are signs of hope appearing, including:
- A new mass vaccination site is opening in Montgomery County at the Germantown campus of Montgomery College starting the week of April 5. https://montgomerycomd.blogspot.com/2021/03/mass-vaccination-site-coming-to_24.html
- Vaccine eligibility in Maryland is expanding:
- Maryland entered phase 2A on March 23, 2021, residents age 60 and older can receive the shot.
- Maryland entered phase 2B on March 30, 2021, residents age 16 and older with underlying medical conditions that increase the risk of severe Covid-19 illness are eligible.
- Maryland will enter phase 2C tomorrow, April 13, 2021, residents age 55 and older, as well as essential workers in critical industries, are eligible.
- Maryland will enter phase 3 on April 27, 2021, all residents age 16 and older will be eligible.
When Can I Get A Shot At My Doctor’s Office?
Maryland has started distributing vaccines to 37 primary care medical practices across the state in a pilot program aimed at increasing availability of vaccine in medically underserved communities. Although we cannot be sure, it looks like practices like ours in Bethesda will probably not be offered vaccines to give to our patients until May or June. We encourage you to register for and receive Covid vaccination when you are eligible.
Your partners in health,
Bethesda Medical Associates