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Don’t let your immunity fall: boosters recommended

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Meritus Health offering new bivalent boosters, a ‘shot’ at providing a

healthier fall, holiday season

HAGERSTOWN, Md. – As the season changes, the brilliant leaves and falling temperatures remind us that trick-or-treating, hayrides, and pumpkin carving are just around the corner.

Also lurking? A possible surge in viral illnesses including COVID and the flu. At present, the community has continued to experience a positivity rate between 10-15% for COVID.

“When we look back over the fall of 2020 and the fall of 2021, the positivity rate for COVID has gone up in November,” explained Maulik Joshi, Dr.P.H., president and CEO of Meritus Health. “Planning to increase your protection by getting the updated booster shot is critical for the health of an individual and our community.”

Joshi said Meritus Health will do what is needed to ensure all eligible community members have access to receive the booster.

The Robinwood Vaccine Clinic will offer the boosters each Wednesday, between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., with appointments required. MyChart users who qualify for a booster will see a step-by-step prompt in their app under the ‘Schedule an Appointment’ activity under the MyChart menu.

The updated booster differs from the conventional monovalent vaccine and booster, which was designed only against the original coronavirus strain. The new shot targets the original strain and the Omicron subvariants that have dominated the U.S. in recent months.

According to the CDC, a person must be at least two months removed from their last vaccination or conventional booster dose before getting the updated booster. Individuals should speak to their doctors as to when to get the booster.

"As we head into our third winter with COVID, and reflect on the enormous impact this virus has had on all of us, I take comfort knowing we have an opportunity to better prevent illness this year. This booster matches the variants that are currently infecting people, and offers us a shot at a holiday season where we can safely resume some of our favorite traditions," Joshi said.

Details on vaccine clinics can be found at MeritusHealth.com.

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Meritus Health, Western Maryland’s largest health care provider, is located at the crossroads of Western Maryland, Southern Pennsylvania and the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia. With over 3,000 employees, 500 medical staff members and 250 volunteers, Meritus Health serves over 200,000 residents of the tristate region. Meritus Medical Center has 327 beds and Meritus Medical group has over 160 providers. More information can be found at www.MeritusHealth.comor visit our Facebook page or LinkedIn page.

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