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OPA COVID-19 Vaccines and Therapeutics: March 28, 2022 Update


NewODH Launches Communications Toolkit for COVID-19 Boosters
The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) has launched a COVID-19 Vaccine Boosters Communications Toolkit to assist with grassroots efforts urging patients to get their booster shot. In Ohio, over 6.7 million Ohioans have completed their initial vaccine series. However, only 3.4 million have received an additional booster dose. Residents over 65 years have only had a 36% rate of booster vaccinations. The goal of this toolkit seeks to use a hyper-personal effort to increase the number of boosters for Ohioans 50 years of age and older. The COVID-19 Vaccine Boosters Communications Toolkit for COVID-19 Vaccine Providers contains signage recommendations, social media examples, talking points, and more to assist vaccinators.

NewFDA Shares Safety Recommendations for COVID-19 Testing Usage and Storage 
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) provided safety recommendations for approved At-Home COVID-19 Tests. This COVID-19 Testing Safety Recommendation document urges individuals to keep the tests out of reach of children and pets, as the testing reagents may cause harm if ingested or come in contact with skin. If there is exposure to testing reagents, individuals should call your local poison control at 1.800.222.1222. or health care provider. Lastly, the tests should also be stored at recommended temperatures and disposed of safely once used.

As a reminder, the federal government continues to provide four free at-home COVID-19 tests to all households. Orders are being shipped by the United States Postal Service (USPS), and distribution dates are 7-12 days from ordering. Please direct your patients to order the tests through this website: Here is a flyer that can be printed and posted in your pharmacy.

Patients who have difficulty accessing the internet or need additional support to order at home COVID -19 tests can call 1-800-232-0233 (TTY 1-888-720-7489) to get help in English Spanish, and more than 150 other languages. The phone line is open from 8 AM to midnight EST every week. The Disability Information and Access Line (DIAL) is also available to help people with disabilities place their orders. To get help, call 1-888-677-1199, Monday-Friday from 9 AM to 8 PM EST, or email [email protected].

Reminder: $100 COVID-19 Medicaid Administration Fee Deadline Extended 
The Ohio Department of Medicaid (ODM) and Ohio’s Medicaid Managed Care Plan (MCP) leaders announced that the administration fee for COVID-19 vaccines is $100 for all COVID-19 shots, including first, second, and booster doses for Medicaid members has been extended to June 30, 2022. See further details on the on the Provider and Pharmacy Resources webpage. The MCP leadership encourages pharmacies to assist Medicaid patients with accessing first, second, and booster shots through phone calls, walk-in appointments, and other personalized outreach. 

Reminder: Medicaid COVID-19 Patient Vaccine $100 Gift Card Incentive Deadline Extended
Ohio’s managed care plans announced that the $100 gift card incentive for Medicaid patients receiving their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine has been extended to June 30, 2022

  1. Pharmacies can receive Visa gift cards directly to give to patients. If you are an independent pharmacy vaccinator, please email [email protected] for your gift card needs. Thank you to those who have already responded with the projected gift cards needed.
  2. Once you get to 75% of your gift card allocation, please reach out to Attn: Meera Patel-Zook – Gift Card Request at [email protected]  so that they can ship out an additional allotment to your store.
  3. If you have received gift cards, please ensure that you track their use through the COVID-19 Vaccine Gift Card Tracker Example. Vaccinators can now add all the information for all MCOs in ONE tracker and send that tracker to [email protected]

Note: This incentive is available to all Medicaid patients ages five and above who are eligible to receive their first COVID-19 vaccine. A legal guardian must accompany individuals who are minors to receive the gift card incentive. 

The following resources are helpful for vaccinators to contact ODH regarding vaccine shipments:

  • COVID Vaccine Provider Call Center: 1-844-963-4829 (The ODH Provider Call Center is open daily from 8:00 am – 7:00 pm Monday through Friday and is no longer open on weekends)
  • COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Resources website

    OPA is working diligently to facilitate communication between state decision-makers and member pharmacists. OPA has created multiple COVID-19 resources, including a COVID-19 Vaccine Information Webpage, COVID-19 Testing Hub, and COVID-19 Resources Webpage, on the OPA website under the Resources drop-down box. Please contact Myriam Shaw Ojeda, Director of Pharmacy Extension and Public Health Initiatives, for further questions at [email protected].

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