As this is an evolving situation, we will provide updated information as it becomes available.
In August 2022, updated bivalent boosters were approved for adults over 18 and over. These boosters provide improved protection against the BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron variants. As we move into the fall and winter it is highly recommended that residents get this new booster when eligible.
As of September 12, 2022, over 79% of Morris County residents are fully vaccinated with more than 93% receiving at least one dose. 44% of residents have received at least one booster dose. All three vaccines currently approved are safe and effective in preventing severe illness and death when administered as directed. This includes illness caused by the most prevalent variants.
As the prevalence of severe illness, as measured by hospitalizations, is a key factor in determining the CDC COVID-19 Community Level, it is important that as many eligible residents as possible receive their COVID-19 vaccine and stay up-to-date with all recommended doses. This is the best way to reduce cases, minimize hospitalizations and keep our community level at low. This is especially true as other mitigation policies such as indoor masking and social distancing become less and less common.
The CDC has also authorized “mixing and matching” for booster doses. That is, no matter which primary vaccine you received, you can proceed with a booster of a different vaccine.
Pregnant women or those who have recently given birth are at higher risk for severe COVID-19 disease. The CDC recently reinforced the strong recommendation that pregnant, recently pregnant or those trying to become pregnant get vaccinated as the benefits outweigh known or potential risks.
Currently all residents aged 6 months and older are eligible to receive a vaccine.
Can I Get a Vaccine at the Madison Health Department?
As vaccine becomes available to the Madison Health Department we will conduct scheduled clinics. Appointments for clinics are required.
Like many aspects of the COVID-19 public health emergency, the vaccination program in NJ is a rapidly changing and ever evolving situation. New Jersey’s COVID-19 Information Hub will have the most up-to-date information on NJ COVID-19 vaccination program.
Need Further Assistance?
How can I get the COVID-19 vaccine if I’m homebound? If you are unable to leave the home to receive a COVID-19 vaccine you may request an in-home vaccination appointment by completing an online form here. You may also contact the Madison Health Department at 973-593-3079 x1 to request an at home visit.
Dedicated Assistance for Residents 65 & Older Senior Residents 65+ can call the dedicated New Jersey Senior COVID-19 Vaccine Hotline between 8:00 A.M. and 8:00 P.M. at 856-249-7007. Agents can assist with:
Registering for the NJ Vaccine Scheduling System (NJVSS)
Scheduling appointments at NJVSS sites, including Senior only appointments at Walmart and Shop Rite locations
NJ COVID-19 Vaccination Call Center Toll-Free: 1-855-568-0545
COVID-19 Vaccines are free to all who live, work or are educated in New Jersey. Some locations may ask for medical insurance information, but it is not required to schedule an appointment or to receive your vaccine.
Never give credit or debit card information, social security number or bank account number to someone calling claiming to be able to make, change or cancel your vaccine appointment.
How Does The Vaccine Work?
Generally, vaccines work by triggering a person's immune system to develop protection against a disease. COVID-19 vaccines help our bodies develop immunity to the virus that causes COVID-19 without us having to get the illness. Different types of vaccines work in different ways to offer protection.
There are three vaccines which are authorized by the FDA to be used in New Jersey
Two are known as messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines. One has been developed by Pfizer and the other by Moderna. Unlike many other vaccines, which put a weakened or inactivated germ into our bodies, mRNA vaccines instruct our cells how to make a specific protein—or even just a piece of a protein—that triggers an immune response inside our bodies. That immune response, which produces antibodies, is what protects us from getting infected if the real virus enters our bodies.
Both mRNA vaccines require two doses and have proven to be highly effective in preventing symptomic infection of COVID-19 with efficacy rates in the mid-90% range shortly after the second dose has been administered.
The third vaccine, developed by Johnson & Johnson is a viral vector vaccine and only requires a single dose. Viral vector vaccines use a modified version of a different virus—the vector—to deliver important instructions to our cells. For COVID-19 viral vector vaccines, the vector (not the virus that causes COVID-19, but a different, harmless virus) will enter a cell in our body and then use the cell's machinery to produce a harmless piece of the virus that causes COVID-19. This piece is known as a spike protein and it is only found on the surface of the virus that causes COVID-19.
COVID-19 vaccines that are authorized for use have gone through clinical trials involving tens of thousands of participants to determine their safety and efficacy. The FDA also has been monitoring patient outcomes on an ongoing basis.
The known and potential benefits of approved vaccines outweigh the known and potential harms of becoming infected with COVID-19. All approved vaccines have been shown to be safe and effective as determined by data from the manufacturers and findings from clinical trials.