The Calvert County Health Department will begin administering the most recently FDA-approved Covid vaccine, Novavax, on August 4 at our Fox Run Shopping Center vaccination site (713 Solomons Island Rd. North in Prince Frederick). Novavax is currently approved for everyone age 18 and older. Appointments for vaccination can be made at the Health Department website, https://www.calvertcountycovid19.com/vaccination-registration-1.
Novavax does not contain mRNA. It is a purified protein based on the spike portion of the covid virus. The technology that went into the development of this vaccine has been used for several decades. It is the same technology used for hepatitis and tetanus vaccines.
Data have shown comparable effectiveness between the Novavax protein virus and currently available vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer. Safety of all three vaccines is also comparable. Because there are no distinct advantages of Novavax over the previously approved vaccines, the FDA has approved it only for people who have chosen to delay vaccination until a non-mRNA or adenovirus vector vaccine is available.
For those who have received Moderna, Pfizer, or Johnson & Johnson vaccinations, they are not currently eligible for a booster with Novavax. Anyone in need of a booster can receive a Pfizer or Moderna dose at our vaccination site (same website link as above). The FDA is conducting further research on the use of Novavax as a booster. It will likely be several months until further information is available.
We continue to see very high rates of covid infections in Calvert County and across the U.S. Although hospitalizations and deaths are not nearly as high as they were last winter, we continue to see people becoming severely ill. Unvaccinated individuals are at higher risk than those who have received vaccination, even if they have had a previous covid infection. Anyone who has declined protection until a more traditional vaccine was available can now move forward. Vaccination will provide personal protection against severe illness and reduce the chance you will unintentionally infect those you care about.