Resources on COVID-19 and Vaccines

Caring for Maryland

COVID-19 and Vaccine Resources for the Community

History tells us that vaccines work. When was the last time you heard of someone diagnosed with polio? So why should COVID-19 and its variants be any different? Having a meaningful, fact-based conversation about COVID-19 vaccinations is the first step. This page offers information on vaccines and ways to talk to your friends and family about how #VaccinesWork.

How much do you know about COVID-19 vaccines? Take the CDC’s quiz to find out.

Questions or Concerns About COVID-19 Vaccine

What if my child tests positive for the coronavirus?

Don't panic. The first thing to remember is that children are incredibly resilient. Most cases of COVID-19 in children are mild. Keep a close eye on your child and check in with your pediatrician, particularly if your child has underlying health conditions that may need monitoring.

Are there vaccines available for children?

CDC recommends everyone 12 years and older should get a COVID-19 vaccination to help protect against COVID-19. Widespread vaccination is a critical tool to help stop the pandemic. Children 12 years and older are able to get the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine.

Should pregnant women get the COVID-19 vaccine?

COVID-19 vaccination is recommended for all people 12 years and older, including people who are pregnant, breastfeeding, trying to get pregnant now, or might become pregnant in the future.

Where can I find a vaccine?

Vaccinations are available through hospitals, local health departments, primary care providers, urgent care centers, and pharmacies. If you are eligible to receive a vaccine, contact providers as indicated to schedule your appointment.

COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. There could be some short-term side effects from the vaccine that go away in a day or two. These are signs that your body is building protection.

Where to Get a Vaccination

MHD: Find a Vaccination Clinic Near You

Where to Get a COVID-19 Test

MHD: Find a Testing Site Near You

Ways to Talk to Others About Getting Vaccinated

Communication is key when it comes to talking to others about getting the vaccine against COVID-19. Here are ways to breach those conversations.

CDC: How to Talk About COVID-19 Vaccines with Friends and Family
WHO: How to Talk About Vaccines
US News: How to Talk to Someone Who’s Hesitant to Get the COVID-19 Vaccine
Poynter: Fact Checks of 10 Prominent Types of Misinformation About Covid-19 Vaccines


Stop the Spread of COVID-19

There are simple things everyone can do—and must do—to stop the spread of COVID-19.

  1. Cover Your Face. Cover both your nose and mouth with a cloth mask whenever you are near people other than those you live with. This is the most worthwhile thing you can do.
  2. Keep Your Distance. Stay at least 6 feet apart from other people. That’s the minimum distance needed to keep airborne virus particles from reaching you, or the other person.
  3. Wash Your Hands. Wash them often, with soap and water for 20 seconds, or use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  4. Cover Your Cough. Cough into a tissue or into your sleeve at the elbow.
  5. Avoid Close Contact with people who are sick.
  6. Avoid Large Crowds. Large gatherings, even outdoors, are one of the easiest ways to catch the virus. It is difficult to keep 6 feet apart at these events and there may be attendees who have traveled from outside your local area.

Maryland hospitals and their deeply committed caregivers are here for you if you need them. But let’s prevent the need altogether and save lives at the same time. Let’s all do our parts to keep ourselves, our families, and our communities safe and healthy.

Don't Delay Care. Maryland Hospitals: Safe. Ready.

You should go to the ER if you have any of these symptoms—Maryland hospitals, health systems, and outpatient clinics remain safe places to seek care—even during the state’s response to COVID-19.

  • Bluish lips or face
  • Bleeding that will not stop
  • Breathing problems (difficulty breathing, shortness of breath)
  • Change in mental status (such as unusual behavior, confusion, difficulty arousing)
  • Chest pain (persistent pain or pressure)
  • Choking
  • Coughing up or vomiting blood
  • Fainting or loss of consciousness
  • Feeling of committing suicide or murder
  • Head or spine injury
  • Severe or persistent vomiting
  • Sudden injury due to a motor vehicle accident, burns or smoke inhalation, near drowning, deep or large wound, or other injuries
  • Sudden, severe pain anywhere in the body
  • Sudden dizziness, weakness, or change in vision
  • Swallowing a poisonous substance
  • Severe abdominal pain or pressure

What Is Coronavirus?

Coronaviruses are a group of viruses that cause respiratory tract infections. Some viruses cause mild colds, while others are more serious.

What Is COVID-19?

This new form of coronavirus was first detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China and the disease it causes has been named “coronavirus disease 2019” or COVID-19.

Dr. Lisa Maragakis, Sr Director of Infection Prevention for The Johns Hopkins Health System, explains what COVID-19 is and how to help prevent transmission. (Feb 20)

What Should You Do If You Think You Are Sick with COVID-19?

Most cases of COVID-19 will not mean hospitalization, or even a trip to an emergency department. Hospital care is a resource that should be reserved for those with the most serious symptoms.

If you have recently traveled to any geographic area of concern or were in contact with someone with COVID-19, and you become sick with fever, cough or have difficulty breathing, seek medical care right away. Follow these steps:

  • Call your doctor or hospital emergency department before you go
  • Tell them about recent travel and close contacts (such as people in your household), who are ill
  • Wear a face mask if one is available
  • Follow the Centers for Disease Control guidelines

If you do not have severe symptoms:

  • Continue to see your health care provider for regularly scheduled visits to address your other medical needs. Do not neglect your existing needs
  • Masks will not prevent you from getting the virus, but they can help prevent the spread of the illness because they stop big droplets from sneezes and coughs from becoming airborne or contaminating surfaces

COVID-19 and the cold and flu season