Information on Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Johns Hopkins Advantage MD is tracking the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation closely. We want to make sure you have up-to-date information, know what to expect, and know how to care for your own and your family’s health.
Please visit coronavirus.jhu.edu for the latest COVID-19 news, health and safety guidelines, and easy instructions for how to protect yourself.
Maryland is under a state of emergency in response to the spread of COVID-19. To stay updated on the changing situation in Maryland, please visit coronavirus.maryland.gov.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG) is alerting the public about fraud schemes related to the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19). Find out how to protect yourself from fraud schemes.
Coronavirus and Your Benefits
It is critical to Advantage MD that our members have appropriate access and coverage to testing and treatment for coronavirus. Advantage MD has updated all benefit plans with the following coverage:
The Federal Drug Administration (FDA) has approved two COVID-19 vaccines. Those who get the vaccine will be better protected from getting COVID-19. The vaccines are an important step in slowing the spread of the disease. Initial doses of the vaccines will be given to those most at-risk. The general public will be able to get the vaccine as more doses are produced.
COVID-19 Vaccine Coverage
The vaccine is available to Advantage MD members at a $0 cost share. Members will have no copay, co-insurance or deductible for an FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine. This coverage applies to both required doses of the vaccine.
Questions We Can Answer Now
Advantage MD is learning everything we can about the vaccines and their availability. The CDC, FDA and state health departments can provide the most complete and up-to-date information, but here are some common questions we can answer for you.
What COVID-19 vaccines have been approved?
The FDA approved two COVID-19 vaccines and a third vaccine is in trials.
- Approved and in use
- Two required doses, three weeks apart
- Pfizer reports vaccine is approximately 95% effective at preventing both mild and severe symptoms of COVID-19
- Approved and in use
- Two required doses, four weeks apart
- Moderna reports vaccine is approximately 95% effective at preventing both mild and severe symptoms of COVID-19
When will I be able to get a COVID-19 vaccine?
States are prioritizing the vaccines by risk level based on CDC guidance.
- Health care workers
- Residents and staff of long-term care facilities
- First responders
- People at significantly higher risk of severe COVID-19 illness
- People in critical, essential infrastructure roles
- People at moderately higher risk of severe COVID-19 illness
- General Population
More doses are expected by spring or summer. Please talk to your health care provider or pharmacy about when you may be able to receive the vaccine. When you are able to get the vaccine, make sure to follow all instructions you receive, including timing of a second dose, as required.
Where will I be able to get the vaccine?
Once more doses are available, most health care providers, retail pharmacies, health departments, and more will have the vaccine. Use vaccinefinder.org to find a convenient location to receive the vaccine. Read more from the CDC.
How safe is the vaccine?
Approved vaccines pass the FDA’s vaccine safety system, which includes clinical trials. Learn more about the safety of the COVID-19 vaccines.
Are there any side effects from the vaccine?
Some people who received the vaccine experienced side effects, such as injection-site pain, fatigue, muscle aches, joint pain, headaches, and chills.
These side effects are normal as your body builds protection. They may impact your day-to-day activities, but should go away in a few days. Learn more about the side effects of the COVID-19 vaccines.
Will I still need to wear a mask and maintain physical distance after I get vaccinated?
Until—and even after—you receive the vaccine, you should continue to practice all measures to stay safe and slow the spread of the disease. These steps include wearing a facemask, keeping a distance of six feet from others, and washing your hands frequently. Experts still do not know for certain whether there are limitations on how long protection may last, so it is best to keep practicing these safety measures.
What can I do right now?
Many people have put off getting routine immunizations during the public health emergency. Make sure that you are caught up on all recommended immunizations and vaccines, including your flu vaccine, if you haven’t already. You should also continue to follow CDC guidelines to stay safe and healthy, including:
- Washing your hands often
- Keeping physical distance
- Wearing a mask or face covering when around others
- Cleaning and disinfecting and monitoring your health daily
- Testing for COVID-19 is covered with an in-network or out-of-network provider.
- Members will have no cost-shares (copayments, co-insurance and deductibles) for COVID-19 testing or visits that result in COVID-19 testing.
- No pre-authorization requirement for COVID-19 testing and the associated visit.
- Medically-necessary testing and treatment at an out-of-network facility will be covered at in-network benefit level.
- Members can be reimbursed for filling prescriptions at an out-of-network pharmacy; cost-shares would still apply at in-network benefit level.
- Early refill restrictions waived on prescription for at least 30-day supplies.
Members can also consider getting a 90-day supply of maintenance medications you take on a regular basis. Visit COVID-19 – Frequently Asked Pharmacy Questions or our pharmacy page to learn more about your prescription coverage.
- Real-time audio/video: Now available to members outside rural areas
- Virtual Check-Ins: 5-10 minute doctor check-ins by phone or video chat
- E-Visits: Doctors analyze members’ pre-recorded video/images within 24 hours
- Same copayments/co-insurance apply for telemedicine as for face-to-face visits.
- Telemedicine used for the testing and treatment of COVID by in-network and out-of-network providers is covered.
Older Adults at High-Risk
Older adults and people who have severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease are at higher risk for more serious COVID-19 illness.
If you are at increased risk for COVID-19 complications due to age or because you have a severe underlying medical condition, it is especially important for you to take actions to reduce your risk of exposure.
There is no vaccine for the coronavirus at this time, but you can take steps to help keep yourself and others safe. Follow these tips to prevent infection:
- Avoid hugs, handshakes, and crowds.
- If you feel sick, stay home.
- If someone in your household has tested positive for COVID-19, keep everyone in the house at home.
- If you are at higher risk of severe illness, stay home and away from other people.
As with any illness, call your provider if you are feeling unwell. You should also call your provider if you experience symptoms of coronavirus—fever, cough and trouble breathing—or if you think you may have been exposed to the virus.
Clean hands save lives! This simple step is one of the best ways to protect yourself and others.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially:
- Before eating
- After going to the bathroom
- After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
- When you can’t get to soap and water, use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick. If someone is sick at home, wash your hands before and after caring for them.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
Our priority remains to ensure that you have access to the health care you need. We will continue to update our website with information that can help you stay healthy, or – in case you get sick – help you get the right care.