Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
COVID-19 Vaccine Update:
On September 11, 2023, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved and authorized the emergency use of an updated COVID-19 vaccine this fall. The updated vaccine is formulated to more closely target currently circulating variants and to provide better protection against serious consequences of COVID-19, including hospitalization and death.
DCHD’s COVID-19 vaccination plans are dependent on a full clinical review and recommendations provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), which was recommended on September 12, 2023.
COVID-19 vaccines are expected to be available from many healthcare providers in the coming weeks including, primary care providers, retail pharmacies, federally qualified health centers (FQHCs), and others. To find a COVID-19 or influenza vaccine near you, visit www.vaccine.gov.
As more information about COVID-19 vaccine recommendations, supply, and distribution become available, DCHD will share additional details on vaccines at DCHD in the weeks to come.
What is a 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)?
There are many types of human coronaviruses including some that commonly cause mild upper-respiratory tract illnesses. COVID-19 is a new disease, caused by a novel (or new) coronavirus not previously seen in humans. COVID-19 was identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China, that has spread around the world, including the United States and all 50 states. Visit the Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ’s) page on CDC’s website for more information.
COVID-19 Resources & Guidance
The end of the public health emergency declaration was on May 11, 2023.
Insurance providers are no longer required to waive costs or provide free COVID-19 tests. CDC’s No Cost COVID-19 Testing Locator can help people find current community and pharmacy partners participating in the Increasing Community Access to Testing (ICATT) program.
- At-home Testing Coverage:
- Medicare: People with traditional Medicare coverage will no longer receive free at-home tests.
- Medicaid: People with Medicaid coverage will have at-home tests covered at no cost through September 2024. After that date, COVID-19 at-home testing coverage will vary by state.
- Private insurance: People with private insurance and private Medicare plans (such as Medicare Advantage) will no longer be guaranteed free at-home tests. However, some insurers may continue to choose to cover them at their discretion.
- No insurance: People who are uninsured will continue to pay out of pocket for COVID-19 at-home tests. Those who are uninsured or who cannot afford at-home tests may still be able to find them at a free clinic, or community health center.
- PCR and Rapid Antigen Testing Coverage:
- Medicare: People with traditional Medicare coverage will continue to receive free PCR and rapid antigen tests administered by a provider, but there may be a copay for the associated doctor’s visit.
- Medicaid: People with Medicaid will continue to receive free PCR and rapid antigen tests through September 2024. After that date, COVID-19 PCR and rapid antigen test coverage will vary by state.
- Private insurance: Coverage for PCR and rapid antigen tests will vary by insurer. People with private insurance and private Medicare plans may be subject to copays, depending on the plan. Some insurers may also begin to limit the number of covered tests or require tests to be done by in-network providers.
- No insurance: People who are uninsured can continue to purchase tests. Those who are uninsured or who cannot afford PCR and rapid antigen tests may still be able to access them at a community health center or find a no-cost testing location at CDC’s No Cost COVID-19 Testing Locator.
- IDPH COVID-19 Outbreak Reporting for Non-High-Risk Settings, including K-12 Schools, Day Cares, Workplaces, Colleges, and Businesses, Guidance (Effective January 1, 2023)
- What to Do If You Were Exposed to COVID-19 | CDC
- Isolation and Precautions for People with COVID-19 | CDC
- Understanding Exposure Risks | CDC
- CDC – Stay Up to Date with Your Vaccines
- CDC – COVID-19 Hospital Admission Level
- CDC – Cleaning, Disinfecting, and Ventilation for COVID-19
- OSHA – Protecting Workers: Mitigating and Preventing COVID-19
Businesses and other non-high-risk settings should continue to track COVID-19 cases internally and review the IDPH COVID-19 Outbreak Reporting for Non-High-Risk Settings, including K-12 Schools, Day Cares, Workplaces, Colleges, and Businesses, Guidance (Effective January 1, 2023)
Last Reviewed: 8/23/2023
DCHD EMAIL – COVID19@dekalbcounty.org Please note, this email is not used to provide medical advice. If you have personal medical questions, please contact your healthcare provider.
IDPH COVID-19 HOTLINE