Written By: Vaccinate Virginia
|What’s New This Week: |
May 27, 2021 The following information is provided to help partners communicate accurate and timely information to constituents, and may be shared publicly. This information is subject to change as Virginia continues to refine the vaccination effort. Visit vaccinate.virginia.gov for more information. If someone forwarded this message to you and you would like to receive future messages directly, please subscribe to the Partner Update. What’s New This Week: Governor Northam is confident that Virginia will meet President Biden’s goal of at least 70% of adults receiving a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine by July 4. To date, more than 66% of adults in Virginia have already received their first dose, with more than 8 million doses of vaccine administered so far in Virginia and more than 43% of the entire population fully vaccinated (more than half of all those 12 and older). The Virginia Vaccination Summary Dashboard now shows the combined totals for doses administered by all providers in Virginia, and also shows the percent of the adult population and entire population.
As a result of rising vaccinations and falling COVID-19 rates, state-mandated social distancing and capacity restrictions will be lifted at midnight tonight (the morning of May 28), when Executive Order 79 will replace Executive Order 72. Businesses retain the ability to require masks in their establishments if they choose to, and individuals are still permitted to wear masks if they choose to. Anyone who is not yet vaccinated should wear masks in all settings. Masks are still required in K-12 settings, given low rates of vaccination among children. The federal government continues to require that masks be worn when using public transportation, including on buses, trains, and airplanes.
Governor Northam led Virginians to participate in the “It’s Our Shot, Virginia: Statewide Day of Action” on May 18, through such activities as signing up to be a COVID Community Ambassador and sharing COVID-19 updates and materials from top experts and sources; adding a Facebook profile photo frame, adding a virtual meeting backdrop; or recording a short video about choosing to get vaccinated and using the hashtag #VaccinateVirginia. This effort resulted in dozens of community events, hundreds of new COVID Community Ambassadors, thousands of online engagements, and approximately 15,000 new vaccinations.
Virginia’s mobile vaccination units support local health department efforts across the state. These units are used primarily in rural, underserved areas to help fill access gaps, and offer the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Site selection is based on data-driven requests by local health districts. Mobile units are ADA-accessible and offer language services, and complement existing mobile capabilities currently in use by local health districts and the Virginia National Guard.
On May 18, Governor Northam launched the nation’s first public statewide health equity dashboards, which provide key data to inform efforts to mitigate long-standing health inequities, following the General Assembly’s finding that racism is a public health emergency in the Commonwealth. The Equity in Action dashboard is a snapshot of the progress Virginia has made across its COVID-19 response and recovery and other initiatives that advance the equitable distribution of resources and services, and the Equity at a Glance dashboard is a transparent assessment of social determinants of health and other factors contributing to health equity.
Virginia is vaccinating everyone 12 or older, with no pre-registration required and walk-in service at most clinics. The simple website at vaccinate.virginia.gov shows nearby clinics, and the statewide call center at 877-VAX-IN-VA provides assistance in more than 100 languages (including video chat in American Sign Language).
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has launched a vaccine confidence campaign entitled “We Can Do This.” Public education shareables and other materials are available to partners to help promote public confidence.
With ample supply available statewide, it is no longer necessary for a patient to receive their second doses of a two-dose vaccine from the same provider that administered the first dose, as long as both doses are of the same vaccine brand. Anyone who received a first dose and does not yet have an appointment for the second dose should visit vaccinate.virginia.gov or call 877-VAX-IN-VA to make an appointment at any clinic offering the same brand, and should bring their first dose vaccination record with them to the second dose clinic. The two doses of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine should be given 21 days apart, and the two doses of Moderna vaccine 28 days apart. If that is not possible, the second dose for each vaccine may be scheduled up to 42 days after the first dose.