COVID-19 Resource Center
Updated April 5, 2021
Our primary goal at Bethesda Medical Associates is to do our best to keep you safe and healthy, in particular during the coronavirus pandemic.
We remain available both during and after office hours, as always, with some important changes detailed in the Office Safety section below. We are prepared to also serve as a source for the most up-to-date information regarding Covid-19 as we all navigate this challenging time together.
Please continue scrolling to read more information, or click a link below to jump to your topic of interest:
- • Vaccine Resources
- • Johnson and Johnson Vaccine
- • COVID-19 Testing
- • COVID-19 Safety Precautions at BMA
- • COVID-19 Informational Resources
- • Former COVID-19 Newsletters from BMA
- • All Maryland residents: https://coronavirus.maryland.gov/pages/vaccine
- • Maryland MassVax: massvax.maryland.gov
- • Montgomery County residents: https://montgomerycountymd.gov/covid19/vaccine/
- • Prince Georges County residents: https://www.princegeorgescountymd.gov/3730/COVID-19-Vaccination
- • You may also send a text message to 898211 with the phrase “MDReady” to receive notifications about vaccine distribution
- • Maryland Vaccine Hunters on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/462938984877900
- • All Virginia residents: https://www.vdh.virginia.gov/covid-19-vaccine/
- • Alexandria residents: https://www.alexandriava.gov/Vaccines
- • Arlington County residents: https://www.arlingtonva.us/covid-19/vaccines/registration/ Arlington COVID Information line: (703)228-7999
- • Fairfax County residents: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/health/novelcoronavirus/vaccine/registration
- • Fairfax Health Department Vaccine Hotline: (703)324-7404
- • https://coronavirus.dc.gov/vaccinatedc
- • D.C. Dept. of Health COVID-19 Hotline: (855)363-0333
- • VETERAN RESOURCES: Walter Reed: https://walterreed.tricare.mil/Health-Services/Preventive-Care/Immunizations/COVID-19-Vaccine
- • CDC RESOURCES: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/index.html
- • PHARMACY LINKS: Walgreens, CVS links
Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine
On February 27, 2021, the FDA approved emergency use authorization (EUA) for Johnson and Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine, the third vaccine to receive EUA to fight the Coronavirus pandemic in the US. The availability of three different vaccines and the associated use of the Defense Production Act to have Merck also manufacture the J&J vaccine means there will be sufficient vaccine supply for all US adults by the end of May 2021. This is definitely very good news, bringing us all closer to the day when we can put our masks away, socialize and travel without the current Covid related restrictions.
In clinical trials, the J&J vaccine reduced Covid-19 infection by 66.3% overall, but it reduced infection by 74.4% in the US. In South Africa the protection was less (52.0%) as the Covid virus variant there has a slightly different configuration of the spike protein. Most importantly, the J&J vaccine was 100% protective against hospitalization or death due to Covid-19.
So, which vaccine should you get? The short answer is, whichever one you are offered first. Any of the three approved vaccines will significantly protect you against Covid-19 infection, hospitalization, and death. Since there are no ‘head to head’ trials comparing these vaccines to one another they should all be considered effective.
A History of COVID-19 Vaccination Eligibility in Maryland
On January 14, 2021, Governor Larry Hogan announced that Maryland would be accelerating its rollout of Covid-19 vaccination as follows:
- • Phase 1B started Monday 1/18/21: This includes people 75 and older, those residing in assisted living and similar facilities, teachers, daycare providers, and people involved in continuity of government.
- • Phase 1C is started on Monday 1/25/21: This phase includes people 65-74, other public health and safety workers as well as other frontline workers (including teachers and other education workers).
Please be aware that vaccine supplies remain extremely limited. The state has only a small fraction of the doses needed. That means that even when you become eligible for vaccination, you may not be able to get an appointment immediately. As manufacturing continues to ramp up, more vaccine will be available. Please remain patient.
We encourage family members to help their older relatives with registering for vaccination appointments.
Private Pay Testing Sites (that our patients have reported having quick turnaround times):
- • Medical Access Clinic
- • A Squared Primary Care
- • Jodie Stone, PA-C, MBA
- • LabCorp Pixel Testing (at-home collection kit, no physician order needed)
COVID-19 Safety Precautions at BMA
When you arrive to our suite, you will be screened at the entrance to the office by one of our staff members. We are unable to accommodate patients who may have symptoms of Covid-19, such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat, which cannot be explained by a chronic condition. If you have any of these symptoms, please contact your physician to address them first by phone or telehealth.
To avoid unnecessary contact with other patients and visitors, we are requesting that anyone who accompanies a patient to the office either wait outside the office, or stay with the patient throughout the visit, including the examination room. The companion will also be required to be screened by our staff for COVID symptoms and fever, and to wear a facial covering when inside the office. In cases where maintaining privacy is required, another examination room will be made available for the companion.
Check out the video below regarding our office safety procedures.
COVID-19 Informational Resources
We are keeping abreast of the latest information regarding the current pandemic, and encourage you to access the links below for up-to-date information from public health experts, our partners at MDVIP, and other resources. We continue to monitor the same resources on a routine basis, and will update our information as it changes.
At this time the CDC recommends travelers avoid all nonessential travel to all global destinations.
Regarding travel within the United States
Montgomery County Family Justice Center