Photo by Arek Socha from Pixabay.

The Howard County Health Department received its first doses of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine has been given to health department personnel who have begun to vaccinate first responders from the Howard County Department of Fire & Rescue and the Howard County Police Department. Required second doses of the Moderna vaccine will be given to this first cohort in 28 days.

While supply is limited in Maryland, local health departments are responsible for vaccinating Phase 1A (health care workers, long-term facility care staff and first responders), preparations are underway to vaccinate Howard County health care providers with direct patient care responsibilities. Provider clinics will begin in the next week as the vaccine is available.

“With this vaccine, we have the key to saving lives and ending this pandemic. However, until we are able to widely vaccinate the population of the county, we must still adhere to our non-pharmaceutical interventions of mask wearing, socially distancing and not gathering with those outside of your household,” said Howard County Health Officer Dr. Maura Rossman.

In the coming months, citizens who fall into Phase 1B  ̶  the elderly, essential workers and people with serious underlying medical conditions  ̶  will be encouraged to register for vaccination clinics on Clinics will be announced at on the

When those in Phase1A and 1B have received vaccine, the Health Department will move forward and begin vaccinating those in Phase 2. It is possible by that time there will be other health care providers able to vaccinate their own patients.