COVID-19 Vaccine Information

COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Updates

From reports around the world, it appears that the Omicron variant may cause increased rates of infection. This, combined with the growing cases numbers in the Commonwealth, is a reminder that COVID is still very much with us. For now, the best thing that we can all do to keep ourselves and those around us safe, is to get the booster shot when eligible and maintain other sensible precautions.

You can check if you are eligible for a booster using the eligibility tool at mass.gov/BoosterCheck.

Massachusetts residents are able to receive COVID-19 booster doses from more than 460 locations, including over 450 retail pharmacies, and state-sponsored COVID-19 booster locations. To schedule an appointment use the VaxFinder tool at vaxfinder.mass.gov for a full list of locations across the state for vaccines for kids and boosters for adults.

COVID Testing

If you are experiencing symptom or have been exposed to the virus, it is important to get tested. Find a testing site near you here.

Cambridge will be receiving over 43,000 at home rapid COVID test through the Governor’s recently announced plan to distribute over 2 million test to the communities most impacted by COVID.

I will continue to provide updates on my website at repdaverogers.com/covid-19-updates

New Data on Breakthrough Cases

This week, the Department of Public Health released updated COVID breakthrough data this week showing that 97% of COVID breakthrough cases in Massachusetts have not resulted in hospitalization or death. Unvaccinated individuals are five times more likely to contract COVID than fully vaccinated individuals and 31 times more likely to contract COVID than individuals who have a booster. Certainly, this is promising news, which emphasizes the importance of making sure you and your loved ones are fully vaccinated.

Boston Vaccine Announcement

Recently, Boston mayor Michelle Wu announced new regulations for the city of Boston in response to the rising case numbers in the Commonwealth as we continue on through the holiday season. Under the mayor’s new directive, all Boston city workers will be required to have at least one dose of a COVID vaccine by January 15th, and two doses by February 15th. The new requirement for city workers eliminates an option for weekly testing in lieu of getting the shot.

Along with the changes to the Boston city employee policy, Boston will now require patrons at city bars, restaurants, gyms, theaters and sports venues, to provide proof of vaccination for entry on the same timeline. Children must be vaccinated to enter those same spaces starting in March. Mayor Wu’s office has indicated that several surrounding cities and towns are considering similar policies, including Arlington and Cambridge.

Updated Covid-19 Response by the Governor

This week, the Baker Administration announced additional measures to address a recent rise in COVID-19 cases and to ensure sufficient capacity to care for both COVID and non-COVID patients.   

Governor Baker activated up to 500 members of the Massachusetts National Guard to address the non-clinical support needs of hospitals and transport systems. Up to 300 of these Guard members will begin training this week and will support acute care hospitals and ambulance service providers across the Commonwealth. Guard personnel will be deployed to the field beginning December 27th, 2021 to assist with any needs that our health system may have.

The Department of Public Health also released updated guidance to hospitals concerning nonessential, elective invasive procedures. To preserve health care personnel resources, on December 27th, all hospitals are directed to postpone or cancel all nonessential elective procedures that are likely to result in inpatient admission. Of course, patients are reminded to still seek necessary care at their hospital or from their health care provider.

Finally, the Department of Public Health released an updated mask advisory. The DPH now recommends that all individuals, regardless of vaccination status, wear a mask or face covering in indoor, public spaces. All people in Massachusetts (regardless of vaccination status) are required to continue wearing face coverings in certain settings, including transportation and health care facilities. 

New Vaccine Tech Coming to Massachusetts

Recently in an interview, Governor Baker discussed a scannable quick response code, commonly known as a QR code, is being looked into by the Commonwealth to show a person’s vaccination status and be made available for others to scan and verify.

A few people have reached out to my office asking whether this is a sign of a statewide vaccine mandate. The Baker administration has clarified that the goal of this project is to create a single QR code that can be used for all sorts of things where people may choose to require a vaccine.

COVID-19 Vaccine Eligibility for Children

A few weeks ago, the FDA gave the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine emergency authorization to use in children ages 5-15 years old and full approval to use in people ages 16 years and older.

You can view more information from the CDC here.

Parents can visit the VaxFinder tool at vaxfinder.mass.gov for a full list of locations. 

COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Updates

With so much unknown about the virus, the best thing that we can all do is get our booster when we become eligible.

ARLINGTON RESIDENTS: You can sign up here for a town booster clinic on December 6th.

SOMERVILLE VACCINE SITE: You can make a booster appointment through the Cambridge Health Alliance here.

COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Updates  

In accordance with the updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), eligible Massachusetts residents can access Moderna and Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 booster shots.  

Both Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 booster shots are now available to:

Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 booster shots are now available to:

  • All individuals 18 and older who received a single dose of the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine at least 2 months ago.

You can check if they are eligible for a booster using the eligibility tool at mass.gov/BoosterCheck.

CDC recommendations now allow for mixing and matching of different COVID-19 booster doses. Eligible individuals may choose which vaccine they receive as a booster dose. Some people may have a preference for the vaccine type that they originally received, and others may prefer to get a different booster.

You can view more information from the CDC here.

COVID-19 Booster Sites

Massachusetts residents are able to receive COVID-19 booster doses from more than 460 locations, including over 450 retail pharmacies, and state-sponsored COVID-19 booster locations, with appointments available now for booking. 

On Tuesday, October 26th, two additional state-sponsored COVID-19 booster locations opened in Brockton and Danvers.

Brockton: Brockton Vaccination & Booster Clinic, Shaw’s Center at 1 Feinberg Way, Brockton, MA

Danvers: Danvers Vaccination & Booster Clinic, 1 Ferncroft Road, Danvers, MA

Visit the VaxFinder tool at vaxfinder.mass.gov for a full list of locations.  

Interactive Digital Dashboard

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has created an interactive dashboards that provide visual data and interactive tools that allow the public to view COVID-19 information, trends and updates.

Frequently Asked COVID-19 Vaccine Questions

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has created a frequently asked questions site that will be routinely updated. Constituent questions can be submitted to COVID-19-Vaccine-Plan-MA@mass.gov

CDC Covid-19 Vaccine Information

In addition, please feel free to call my office at (617)722-2637 or call me on my personal cell phone at 617-817-9395 if the need arises. If you hear of friends or neighbors in need during these difficult days, please pass along my contact information and send them my way. My staff and I are here to help.

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Contact Dave

Please never hesitate to contact me for any reason.

Phone: 617-722-2637
Email: dave.rogers@mahouse.gov
Mail: State House Room 544, Boston, MA 02133