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COVID-19: Get Vaccinated and Boosted to Protect Yourself and Loved Ones

Charlotte Locals

Want to help? Join “DC Grandparents Against COVID-19” to encourage family and friends to get vaccinated


Getting vaccinated and boosted is still the best way to ensure you and your loved ones are protected from the most adverse effects of COIVD-19. Experts say boosters can strengthen the body’s immune response against the highly contagious variants and prevent some of the worst outcomes of a coronavirus infection.

Unvaccinated individuals were 21 times more likely to die than their boosted peers during the height of the omicron surge, federal data shows. And in the 65-plus age group, hospitalizations were nine times higher in unvaccinated individuals, compared to those who had been vaccinated and boosted.

Recently, the CDC upgraded its guidance to older Americans and people with compromised immune systems who are 12 years-old and older. The CDC guidance went from saying that these two groups of people “may” get a second COVID-19 vaccine booster shot, to saying they “should” get a fourth dose.

To help convince more DC residents of all ages to get vaccinated and boosted, AARP DC teamed up with HelpAge USA to launch DC Grandparents Against COVID-19. DC Grandparents Against COVID-19 is a movement led by adults 60 years-old and older who are united in encouraging loved ones to get vaccinated and boosted against COVID-19. Participants in the DC Grandparents Against COVID-19 program will learn about the benefits of vaccination from medical professionals and others during weekly educational sessions. These educational sessions will empower participants to use what they learned to talk with members of their family and community about the importance of getting the COVID-19 vaccine.

Judy Brown, a grandmother and resident of Ward 8 said, “I have seen too many people die. I don’t want to bury my children or grandchildren. I have to be an example for them … We can get through this together. It’s going to take the whole country, the whole world to make a difference. But we can look out for each other in our neighborhoods and communities.”

Grandparents have a wealth of wisdom and knowledge to share with their family and friends who may be hesitant to get the shot. If you are interested in joining, please visit: https://helpageusa.org/dcgrandparents for more information. Grandparents and those who are like a grandparent are encouraged to get active in their community and engaged on this important initiative.

Additionally, a new set of at-home tests are available for all District residents to request from the federal government. Anyone can now go to covidtests.gov and order a third round of free at-home COVID-19 tests. This latest round will provide eight free tests per household. There is no cost for the tests or for the shipping, which is being done by the U.S. Postal Service. Individuals who have difficulty accessing the internet or just need help placing an order can call 800-232-0233 from 8 a.m. to midnight ET, seven days a week. Assistance is available in English, Spanish and 150 other languages.

COVID-19 vaccines are free and available at locations throughout the District. For more information on how to get vaccinated, visit: aarp.org/dcvaccine.

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