The COVID-19 vaccine is an important step in the fight against coronavirus. All COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the US have been shown to be highly effective and preventing COVID-19 and works with your immune system to help keep you from getting seriously ill even if you are exposed to the virus.
Montgomery County is vaccinating individuals over 75 years old, although we know many of our community members have been frustrated with trying to get an appointment in Montgomery County. With the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine – likely to be deployed in Maryland next week – we hope that vaccine availability increases and there are more opportunities to receive that crucial shot for those who are eligible.
And it’s important to be prepared! With the time and resources we’ve put into helping get our clients, caregivers, and staff vaccinated, we’ve put together some tips to help those over 75 years old (as well as frontline workers and other eligible individuals) get the vaccine in Maryland.
- Text “MDReady” to 898-211. This will notify you when large groups of appointments become available. You will receive a text (usually on Friday mornings) that vaccines are available at Maryland’s mass vaccination sites – Six Flags (Upper Marlboro), M&T Stadium (Baltimore) and the Baltimore Convention Center.
- State hotline - you can call (855) 634-6829 to book a vaccine appointment. Currently, they are booking at the Six Flags site. As long as you are eligible, you can live in any county and book at the state-run facilities. I have heard it can be difficult to get through to someone, but many have been successful booking this way - the line is available until 10pm each night.
- Check massvax.maryland.gov, especially around 9am on Friday mornings as they have opened up many appointments each of the last two Fridays around that time.
- Preregister with Montgomery County - they will reach out by phone or email if they have available appointments.
- Local hospitals are vaccinating 1A/1B/1C.
- Adventist HealthCare – preregister to be notified about upcoming appointments.
- Holy Cross Health (1A/1B) – check the website as they announce when they will release new appointments.
- Kaiser Permanente
- MedStar Health
- Suburban Hospital | Johns Hopkins Medicine
- Veterans – Washington DC VA Medical Center has a limited amount of vaccines for Veterans already receiving care from the VA, based on CDC and VA risk criteria. Call 202-745-4342 for more information.
Pharmacies are also vaccinating those in priority groups 1A/1B/1C, but I’ve found the process of finding an appointment there daunting. Each pharmacy has a separate website to sign up at and each one tends to release appointments at different times (for example, Giant tends to release appointments around 7am on Mondays). Make sure you create an account at each website. Pharmacies will vaccinate any Maryland resident, regardless of county, so you can search various zip codes for appointments.
At Griswold Home Care, our professional caregivers can make sure your loved one gets to and from their vaccine appointment safely and keep tabs on any side effects experienced in the few days after receiving the vaccine. Our caregivers can also provide companionship, meal preparation, light housekeeping, and more.
Call us today to learn more about how we can help!
If you or an aging loved one are considering non-medical in-home care in Chevy Chase, MD, call Griswold Home Care
and speak to one of our caring staff members today. Call (301) 234-6440