Do you have questions about CDC recommendations or need help finding a vaccination of testing site? The resources below have the most up-to-date information about COVID-19, vaccine boosters and staying safe.
Omicron, the latest variant of COVID-19, is milder than earlier variants but very contagious. It’s still very dangerous to vulnerable people and very good at infecting them. Protect yourself and people who are at high risk with masks and boosters.
If you are at high risk, learn more about treatment options during the Omicron surge.
All about masks
If you are still wearing cloth masks, it’s time to consider upgrading. Experts say that cloth masks are not effective against COVID-19 variants like Omicron. Wear high-quality masks if you can. Double up if you can’t.
There are many fake masks on the market. You can protect yourself and others by buying masks from reliable sources such as projectn95.org, a nonprofit shop that sells masks and other PPE equipment.
You are also going to able to pick up free N95 masks at pharmacies and community health centers in the coming days.
Two months ago, people weren’t regularly getting boosted. Now we know that two doses of the vaccination (1 dose if you had Johnson and Johnson) do not protect very well against Omicron. By getting your booster, however, you can dramatically increase your immunity. If it has been more than 6 months since becoming vaccinated, consider getting boosted.
Testing, isolation and quarantine
You can now order free at-home COVID tests. Please note that only 4 tests will be sent to each address. It is important if you live in a building with multiple residences that you include your apartment number. If you can, it’s best to use rapid tests a couple of days in a row. Good times to test:
- 24 and 48 hours before a gathering or visit with someone who is high-risk
- 5-7 days after a possible exposure
- 2-3 days after you feel sick and think you might have COVID
This is the best practice, but it may not always be possible to do it if it is hard for you to find or afford test kits.
Returning to work after testing positive
With the new updated CDC guidance, you may be asked to return to work after only five days of isolation.
Plenty of vaccinated, boosted people will have cleared the virus from their system by then. However, some will still be infectious after five days. For those who can, it may be wise to either isolate the full ten days or test at day five and continue to isolate if the test is still positive.
For those who can’t continue to isolate, it’s best to be extra careful. Keep a high-quality mask on, try not to be out in public more than necessary, and postpone any visits to vulnerable loved ones.
It is easier than ever to find a vaccination site and get your shot. COVID-19 vaccinations are now available to anyone 5 and older. Boosters are recommended for children and adults 12 and older.
Did you know that you can now receive your vaccination in your own home?
If you are unable to leave your home to get vaccinated, you can now arrange to get a free COVID-19 vaccination in your own home.
To schedule a vaccine in your home, contact the At-Home Vaccination Hotline at 1-866-303-0026. An online registration form is also available at www.ptrc.org/covid. A PTRC Vaccination Specialist will follow up to schedule an at-home vaccination. Learn more about this program.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space][vc_column_text]
DRNC vaccine hotline
- Get help scheduling in-home and clinic vaccine appointments
- Request free n95 masks
- Get information about vaccines or any other COVID-19 questions
- Report problems accessing vaccines or testing
Support for COVID-19 questions
NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center
- 1-888-675-4567. This is a free call and is available in English and Spanish. Staff provide information about the vaccines, as well as information regarding eligibility and how to find a vaccine. You can also talk to clinicians about questions you may have after receiving the vaccine.
- They support TTY and also have a language line for all other languages.
NC COVID-19 help line
- North Carolinians with questions or concerns about COVID-19 can call the COVID-19 phone line toll-free at 1-866-462-3821. This helpline is offered in English and Spanish and is staffed by the North Carolina Poison Control 8 am-8pm, 7 days a week.
Staff are trained to
- Help find local vaccination locations
- Assist with making vaccination appointments
- Connect callers to local services – such as accessible transportation – to overcome barriers to vaccination.
The hotline also can provide information and resources to answer questions and address concerns about the vaccines and can connect callers to information and services that promote independent living and address fundamental needs, such as food, housing, and transportation.
FAQ on vaccines, including information about how the vaccine was developed so quickly from Wake County Public Health’s COVID-19 information page.
List of vaccine finder tools:
Transportation to vaccination sites
The state is offering free transportation to vaccination sites for those who need it. People who need transportation to get the COVID-19 vaccine should reach out to their local transit agency. Find your local transit agency online. Local transit agencies serve all 100 North Carolina counties. Learn more here.
Webinar on transportation from the National Center for Mobility Management
Video of vaccine info session, recorded 03/2021
Watch an engaging and informative Q&A webinar and view follow up questions from our March 3rd vaccine info session. Topics covered include:
- Vaccine safety
- Access to vaccines for people with disabilities
- Vaccine hesitancy for historically marginalized communities.
A big thank you to family physician and DRNC board member Dr. Crystal Bowe, and infectious disease specialist Dr. Cameron Wolfe of Duke University who joined us March 3rd for this special event to answer community questions.