We care about our patients and employees and are taking all possible measures to reduce risk of COVID-19. With that in mind, THMC is following additional guidelines and protocols:
We appreciate our patients support and understanding as we navigate this difficult situation. We want to do everything possible to reduce risk of spreading Covid-19.
Vaccines are an important tool to help communities fight the spread of certain bacterial and viral infections, including COVID-19, and help people stay healthy. They work with your immune system so your body will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed. However, widespread availability of a vaccine likely will not occur for many months. Therefore, it is critically important to continue following the advice of your doctor and care team in order to minimize the chances of catching or spreading the disease. Getting the COVID-19 vaccine, combined with following recommendations by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including wearing masks, practicing social distancing and washing your hands, remain the best protections against the virus.
Yes. There are currently two authorized COVID-19 vaccines. Vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna have both received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) in the United States, meaning that they can be made available to the public during the pandemic. We believe the vaccines are both safe and effective and the benefits of being vaccinated outweigh any identified risks or side effects. There are three other COVID-19 vaccines in earlier stages of development in the United States.
According to the CDC, “There will be a limited supply of COVID-19 vaccines at start, but supply will continually increase in the weeks and months that follow. The goal is for everyone to be able to easily get a COVID-19 vaccination as soon as large quantities are available.”
Due to limited supplies, the CDC recommends giving the COVID-19 vaccine in phases, which may overlap. Initially, the CDC recommended that healthcare workers and residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities, be the first groups to receive vaccines. Currently, the CDC has updated the recommendation on who should get vaccinated first to include frontline essential workers, people aged 75 or older, people 65-74 with underlying health risks and other essential workers.
It is important to note that states are developing their own prioritization plans based on the CDC’s recommendations, so eligible groups may vary somewhat from state to state.
We strongly encourage all Total Health patients to receive the COVID-19 vaccine when available. We are working closely with health and state officials to secure vaccines for our patients. Due to the limited supply, we will likely get vaccines in batches and will schedule appointments based on the number of vaccines received in each shipment. We will schedule vaccination appointments in accordance with federal and state prioritization guidelines. In the meantime, we are working on a distribution plan and will inform you when the vaccine becomes available. Remember, it is important to continue to protect yourself before and after being vaccinated by following CDC guidelines. You should cover your mouth and nose with a mask when around others, avoid close contact with people who are sick, stay 6 feet away from others, avoid crowds, and wash your hands often.
If you can get the vaccine from another location authorized by your state’s department of health, please do so. We recommend that all patients receive their second dose of the vaccine at the same location where they received their first dose. Please keep track of your two vaccine doses and communicate this update to your Total Health provider at your next visit.
Visit your state’s department of health website for the latest information:
Florida Department of Health
Wherever you get the vaccine, it is important to confirm the source is safe and reputable to avoid becoming a victim of fraud. A recent warning from the FBI provides information on potential indicators of COVID-19 vaccine related fraud and tips on how to avoid it. You can find a link to the FBI warning here.
If you are a victim of a scam or attempted fraud involving COVID-19, you can:
File a complaint with the National Center for Disaster Fraud or call their hotline at 866-720-5721
Report it to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center
Contact your local FBI field office or submit a tip online at tips.fbi.gov
Total Health Medical Centers is working with all authorities to help distribute vaccines once they become available.
According to the CDC, “The U.S. vaccine safety system ensures that all vaccines are as safe as possible. Learn how federal partners are working together to ensure the safety of COVID-19 vaccines.”
To see the latest from the CDC on what to expect after getting a COVID-19 vaccine, visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/expect/after.html.
The COVID-19 vaccines will be delivered via injection. Most will require two doses to be effective, including the two vaccines that recently received Emergency Use Authorization. The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine will require two shots, administered about 21 days apart. The Moderna vaccine will require two shots, administered about 28 days apart.
According to the CDC, both the Pfizer1 and Moderna2 vaccines are reported to be about 94% to 95% effective in preventing COVID-19. Remember that you will not get full protection from just 1 dose of these vaccines. It is critical that you schedule and receive the second dose in order to receive the full vaccine protection.
We recommend that all patients receive their second dose of the vaccine at the same location where they received their first dose.
COVID-19 vaccination should be offered to you even if you have been sick with COVID-19 before. You should not be required to have an antibody test before you are vaccinated.
Current evidence suggests that reinfection with the virus that causes COVID-19 is uncommon in the 90 days after initial infection. Therefore, we recommend that anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 should wait 90 days before receiving the vaccine following a negative test or 90 days following 14 days of showing no symptoms.
If you have concerns due to your health status or a specific medical condition, speak with your doctor or care team about whether the vaccine is appropriate for you.
During this pandemic, it is important that you still get your needed medical care and attend your doctor’s appointments. Keeping your health conditions well managed—by staying on top of your preventive and regular medical care—will help to manage your health risk during this pandemic. This is one of the best ways to protect yourself while awaiting the availability of the vaccine.
Remember, that for most people, a COVID-19 vaccine will not be available for months, so it is important to continue to protect yourself before and after you get vaccinated. You should cover your mouth and nose with a mask when around others, avoid close contact with people who are sick, stay six feet away from others, avoid crowds, and wash your hands often. If you start to not feel well or have questions about your health, please call our office and speak to a member of your care team.
Yes. All FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines will be covered at no additional cost during the public health emergency. It also covers instances in which two vaccine doses are required.
There are currently no other available vaccines that will prevent COVID-19. However, multiple agencies and groups in the United States are working together to make sure that a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine is available as quickly as possible.
A flu vaccine will not protect you from getting COVID-19, but it can prevent you from getting influenza (flu) at the same time as COVID-19. That means that getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever.
For the latest information about COVID-19 vaccines, visit the CDC’s website.