Update on Boosters and Other Notes From Governor Hogan’s 9/30/21 Press Conference

by MCS Staff

Governor Hogan is holding a press conference to provide a Covid update to Marylanders.

Below you’ll see notes from his press conference, as tweeted by his Deputy Communications Director, Kata Hall:

• VACCINE UPDATE. Maryland has administered more than 7.9 million COVID-19 vaccines, including:
-96.1% of Marylanders 65+
-83.6% of Marylanders 18+
-82.6% of all eligible Marylanders 12+

• COVID-19 DATA UPDATE:
-Last week, Maryland reported the lowest case rate in the nation
-Positivity rate down 20% over the last month
-Hospitalizations down 60% from peak
-COVID hospitalizations account for just 11% of total hospitalizations statewide

 

• COVID-19 BOOSTERS. In spite of limited and confusing federal guidance, Maryland health officials have spent the last several months building the infrastructure for a statewide operation for boosters.

As of today, Maryland has administered over 78,000 booster shots.

 

• “If you are confused about boosters, you are not alone. With so much conflicting guidance out there, I want to take a moment today to simply give Marylanders the current status.”

• MODERNA BOOSTER ELIGIBILITY. If you received a Moderna COVID-19 vaccine and you are immunocompromised, you are also currently eligible for a booster shot.

However, there is still no approval or guidance yet on Moderna boosters for the wider population.

 

• J&J BOOSTER ELIGIBILITY. If you received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine, there is still no federal guidance whatsoever for boosters.

The governor has been pressing for action and is hopeful that we will see more progress in the next few weeks.

 

• BOOSTER OUTREACH. Maryland has launched a vigorous outreach effort for those Marylanders who are currently eligible for a booster shot.

 

• Maryland Health Department issued a bulletin directing providers to make boosters available to all eligible Marylanders

-Health officials are engaging directly with nursing/ congregate care facilities, local health depts, primary care physicians, hospitals, pharmacies, other providers

 

• Statewide call center is directly contacting eligible Marylanders and has scheduled over 30,000 appointments for booster shots

-Marylanders can now visit covidvax.maryland.gov to find out where Pfizer boosters are available near you

 

• The state will also be launching a series of television and radio ads encouraging eligible Marylanders to get their booster shot

 

• COVID-19 VACCINES FOR 5- TO 11-YEAR-OLDS. In anticipation of federal approval, Governor Hogan has directed state health officials to work closely with pediatricians, school systems, and local health departments to accelerate plans for vaccinating children.

 

• Governor Hogan: “The most important thing school systems can do right now to limit outbreaks and to prevent needless quarantines is utilize the robust testing capacity they have been given.”

 

• SCHOOL TESTING PROGRAM UPDATE. Last year, Maryland introduced a statewide testing program for schools, making up to 1 million tests available immediately for both public and nonpublic schools

 

• For the current school year, the Hogan admin has provided $182 million to local school systems for surveillance testing of the student population.

The application period for this program has been extended to Oct. 10. So far, only 13 public school systems are participating.

• Maryland Health Department’s testing program currently has 415,800 rapid tests available for schools to access.

-The state has provided over $2.7 billion in emergency federal funding directly to school systems over the past 18 months. Nearly $2 billion remains unutilized by the schools.

 

• EMERGENCY LEGISLATION TO INCREASE NURSING WORKFORCE. Governor Hogan announces that he will introduce emergency legislation to maximize the ability of hospitals to increase their nursing workforce.

 

• This legislation would make permanent a number of the steps the governor announced last week to mitigate staffing shortages.

 

• MONOCLONAL ANTIBODY TREATMENT UPDATE:
-Maryland has administered over 13,000 monoclonal antibody treatments
-These treatments have helped avoid approx. 600 hospitalizations and more than 250 deaths

 

• Monoclonal antibody therapy is available at more than 80 facilities statewide, and health officials have directed clinicians to step up their utilization of this treatment.

For more information, visit: CovidLink

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