COVID-19 UPDATE
8-16-2021
In an effort to keep our members current on the latest information regarding the coronavirus crisis and vaccinations, the Medical Society of Delaware is sharing the following:
ACIP Recommendations for Consideration of Third Dose of mRNA Vaccine

Read details and implementation considerations provided in the Delaware Health Alert on the expanded COVID-19 Vaccine EUAs for a third dose in some immunocompromised.

As reported last week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) expanded the emergency use authorization (EUA) for both the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine to authorize a third dose of the same COVID-19 vaccine administered at least 28 days following the two-dose regimen of either vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is also in agreement. This authorization applies only to eligible individuals (12 years of age or older for Pfizer-BioNTech or 18 years of age or older for Moderna) who have undergone solid organ transplantation or who are diagnosed with conditions that are considered to have an equivalent level of immunocompromise. This action does not apply to immunocompromised persons who received the Janssen Johnson & Johnson (J&J) vaccine as their first dose, as the FDA and CDC did not have adequate data to make the same recommendation. At this time, the CDC does not recommend additional doses or booster shots for any other population.
 
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has defined what other conditions are considered to be "an equivalent level of immunocompromise" and has made recommendations for those individuals to be considered for a third dose of an mRNA vaccine. (Refer to the Delaware Health Alert.)

Delaware providers may begin administering booster vaccines immediately, using best clinical judgment.

Providers with general questions can contact VaccinePlanning@delaware.gov. If you are an enrolled provider and wish to order vaccine, email OEMS@delaware.gov or contact COVIDVaccine@delaware.gov if you wish to enroll as a COVID-19 provider. 

All confirmed and suspected cases of COVID-19 are to be reported to the Division of Public Health Office of Infectious Disease Epidemiology (OIDE) at (302) 744-4990 (normal business hours) or (888) 295-5156 (outside of normal business hours), fax to (302) 223-1540, or email to reportdisease@delaware.gov.
COCA Call to Discuss Current Data
on COVID-19 Vaccines in Immunocompromised

The Clinician Outreach and Community Activity (COCA) will hold a Zoom call on Tuesday, August 17 from 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Presenters will discuss the current data on COVID-19 vaccines in immunocompromised people; the role of additional doses of mRNA COVID-19 vaccines; patients who should be considered to receive these additional COVID-19 vaccine doses; results from the August 13 ACIP meeting; and the CDC's guidance on additional COVID-19 doses in immunocompromised people.
DPH Announcements
Given the significant increase in recent COVID-19 cases and the large number of gatherings and events taking place this time of year, the Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) is recommending that individuals get tested if they have attended a large public gathering such as a concert, community-based event, or such event where social distancing was not possible and the vaccination status of others is unknown. A list of testing locations can be found at de.gov/gettested.

The Department of Health and Social Services and the Department of Education made technical corrections to Thursday's emergency face mask regulations. The updated orders are here and the requirements remain the same as previously announced: masks must be worn by staff, visitors, and kindergarten-aged students and above inside school buildings and child care centers whenever children are present. Schools and child care centers are strongly encouraged to require masks for children ages 2-4.

Delaware Case Statistics - As of August 15, 2021
  • 74.3% - Percentage of 18+ population vaccinated with at least one dose
  • 250.6 - 7-day average of new positive cases
  • 6.5% - 7-day average percentage of tests positive
  • 83 - hospitalizations, with 19 critical

Delta Variant
The Delta variant is the predominant strain in the country, state, and region. It spreads twice as easily as other variants from person to person. The majority of the spread is among the unvaccinated, however, data is showing that a small amount of transmission can occur among fully vaccinated people. Delaware previously was seeing an increase of only two cases per week; however, last week all variant strains were Delta.
Medicare Reimbursement for Administration of Additional Dose of COVID-19 Vaccine

According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Medicare stands ready to pay for administering an additional dose of COVID-19 vaccine consistent with the FDA emergency use authorization (EUA). The same amount will be paid to administer the additional dose as was done for other doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (approximately $40 each). More information will be shared in the coming days about billing and coding. CMS COVID-19 Provider Toolkit
Back-to-School Vaccination Events - Open to All Eligible

Through a partnership with the Department of Education, the Division of Public Health, and Albertsons, there will be back-to-school vaccination events held on August 19 (4:00 - 8:00 p.m.), with second doses available on September 9th at the same times and same four school locations across the state. The event is open to students age 12 and older, families, and school staff. You do not need to be associated with the school to get vaccinated. Students younger than 18 years who are not accompanied by a parent or guardian must present written consent. Walk-ins are accepted, although registration is preferred. Access flyers in English, Spanish, and Haitian-Creole.
For more information and resources regarding COVID-19, MSD has created a coronavirus resource page on our website. View resource page 
Medical Society of Delaware
900 Prides Crossing
Newark, Delaware 19713
(302) 366-1400

You are receiving this communication as a benefit of your membership in the Medical Society of Delaware.