January 27, 2021

County Begins Vaccinating Residents 75 and Older for COVID-19

Montgomery County is now vaccinating residents 75 and older for COVID-19 and will continue providing appointment links to others in Priority Group 1B as vaccine supply allows. However, a national COVID-19 vaccine shortage, and the limited amount of doses the County and the State receive weekly, will result in fewer residents who are preregistered getting an appointment immediately.

To focus the limited vaccine supply on the most vulnerable individuals, County health officials are restricting access to vaccinations to all but those people who follow the official preregistration process. The County Government is aware that appointment links have been forwarded and the State appointment system does not have a filter to prevent sharing a link. The sharing of links has created confusion for residents and is negatively impacting the vaccine distribution process. The County is working with State officials to modify the system to prevent this. Residents should not forward the appointment link to others.

Earlier this week, County Executive Elrich met with Maryland Governor Larry Hogan regarding increasing vaccination doses to Montgomery County. After that meeting, the Governor announced the State hopes to receive more vaccines soon.

When eligible, and based on the vaccine supply, County residents who have preregistered will receive a direct link from c19vaccination@montgomerycountymd.gov to make an appointment. People who have not received a link directly from the County and show up to a County-operated vaccine clinic will not be served unless they are in Priority Group 1A or 75 and older.

Those in tiers within Priority Group 1B, including teachers, childcare workers, essential workers and individuals with developmental disabilities, will be invited to preregister later this week. People in Priority Group 1C, Tier 1 (65-74 years old) also will be invited to preregister later this week.

While the County is now in Phase 1B, tier 1, vaccinating those 75 years and older, County Department of Health and Human Services staff continue to vaccinate residents in Phase 1A, which includes frontline health care workers.

The County also is working with other health care partners, including local hospitals and health care systems, to expand the number of vaccinations available. Some private providers are offering the COVID-19 vaccine as well.

Residents can sign up on the vaccine website for weekly vaccine updates. A Vaccine Dashboard on the site provides updated information on the distribution of vaccines. The information includes the number of vaccines received and the number distributed.

The dashboard also establishes the priority list for people to receive vaccines in Montgomery County.

Priority Group 1 A (Tier 1) recipients include:
  • Hospital personnel
  • *Long Term Care Facilities (staff and residents)
  • *Development Disability Agency group homes
  • *Assisted Living Facilities
  • *Rest and Rehabilitation Facilities
  • *Delivered via pharmacy partnership
Priority Group 1 A (Tier 2) includes populations with frequent exposure to individuals with known COVID-19 and/or providing services essential to the maintenance of public health and healthcare systems during the COVID-19 pandemic. This group will include:
  • EMS
  • Vaccinators (LHD, school nurse, etc.)
  • Testing sites – testers/onsite registration workers
  • Public Health – COVID-19 response staffs
  • Urgent care staffs
  • Primary care staffs
Priority Group 1A (Tier 3) includes populations with risk of exposure to individuals with suspected COVID-19 and/or providing services essential to the maintenance of public health and health care systems during the COVID-19 pandemic. This group will include:
  • Dental practices
  • Pharmacists
  • Other health care professionals (e.g., outpatient specialties, optometrists, physical therapists, podiatrists, community health workers, in-home nursing staff)
  • Detention Centers staff
  • Homeless shelters staff
  • Law enforcement (patrol/public-facing)
Priority Group 1A (Tier 3) includes:
  • Fire and Rescue workers
  • 911 dispatchers
  • Behavioral health (non-telehealth staffs) – e.g., residential/recovery
  • School nurses (non-vaccine/non-testers)
  • Lab workers
  • Morticians/funeral home staff
  • Surgical centers staff
  • Other providers licensed by Maryland
Priority Group 1B (Tier 1) consists of:
  • Adults age 75 years and older
Additional details on the County’s distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, including the groups in Priority Groups 1B (Tier 2) and Priority Group 1C, can be found on the COVID-19 vaccine website.