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Monkeypox Vaccine Information

August 16, 2022. Learn about the JYNNEOS vaccine for monkeypox and its availability in Massachusetts at https://www.mass.gov/info-details/monkeypox-vaccination. Learn about the vaccine’s availability in Rhode Island at https://www.mass.gov/info-details/monkeypox-vaccination.

Change to National Suicide Prevention Lifeline Access

As of July 16, 2022, access to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and the Veterans Crisis Line is easier. Americans can now call or text to 988 if they or someone they care about are experiencing a mental health crisis or are at risk of suicide. The 988 number replaces the longer number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (phone or text 800.273.8255). A new 988 (then press 1) number replaces 800.273.8255 (then press 1), the original number for the Veterans Crisis Line, bringing callers to specialized assistance for military veterans and their families.

COVID-19 Vaccinations and Treatment

July 7, 2022.  Have you tested positive for COVID-19? The Massachusetts Department of Public Health can help. Use their free telehealth service as soon as you can to see if Paxlovid is right for you. If it is, the DPH will have it ready at a local pharmacy or deliver it to your home. Learn more at  https://t.co/CUIk2n7wfI.

June 21, 2022. : Have you tested positive for COVID-19? Free treatment options can help reduce your symptoms and prevent you from getting seriously sick. The sooner you start, the better. Call your doctor ASAP and find out more at https://t.co/TY16IDVl57

May 18, 2022. Residential households in the U.S. can now order a third set of free at-home COVID-19 tests from the federal government. This set contains eight tests. Order at  https://special.usps.com/testkits.

March 31, 2022. The CDC has launched COVID.gov, a one-stop toolkit to help users find vaccines, treatments, and testing and to provide community-level data. 

The Massachusetts website that provides COVID-19 information now includes information on obtaining a digital vaccine card, selecting and using a safe mask, and obtaining vaccines and boosters. Go to mass.gov/CovidVaccine.

March 30, 2022. The CDC has updated its recommendations to allow certain immunocompromised people and people over age 50 who received a first booster dose of the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at least 4 months ago to be eligible for another mRNA booster to increase their protection against severe disease from COVID-19. Adults who received a primary vaccine and booster dose of Johnson & Johnson's Janssen COVID-19 vaccine at least 4 months ago may now receive a second booster using an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine.

January 11, 2022. US Family Health Plan covers the cost of COVID-19 vaccinations and booster shots for Plan members in eligible age groups, whether they obtain their vaccination at a pharmacy, health center, or other location. If you have an order from your doctor and a COVID test is deemed medically necessary, the cost will be covered by US Family Health Plan. "At home" tests are not covered by the Plan.  Learn more at https://tricare.mil/HealthWellness/HealthyLiving/Coronavirus/Coronavirus-Testing.

December 2021. COVID-19 vaccination is now recommended for people who are pregnant, breastfeeding, trying to get pregnant now, or who might become pregnant.   

As of November 19, 2021, booster shots are available to all adults 18 and older who received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, if at least six months have passed since their second dose. They are also eligible if they have received the single-dose J&J vaccine, if at least two months have passed since they received the vaccine.

In Massachusetts, to find places to receive a booster, go to vaxfinder.mass.gov.  In Rhode Island, go to VaccinateRI.org

If You Have COVID-19 Symptoms

If you have symptoms of COVID-19, have been in close contact with a person sick with COVID-19, or traveled to an area with widespread or ongoing community spread of COVID-19, do not make an appointment or walk into your provider's office. Instead, stay at home and call your provider's office so they can assess your symptoms. Members may also call the 24-Hour Nurse Advice Line at 1.866.767.4546.

COVID-19 Resources

These government resources are updated often:

Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

TRICARE
https://www.tricare.mil/HealthWellness/HealthyLiving/Coronavirus

Massachusetts Department of Public Health
https://www.mass.gov/orgs/department-of-public-health

State of Rhode Island Department of Health
https://health.ri.gov/diseases/ncov2019/

Online VA Workshops Help You Get a Handle on Your Health

It's easy to learn about a range of health and wellness topics in the privacy of your home. The Veterans Administration (VA) offers free, confidential, online workshops on topics including insomnia, anger management, problem-solving, and parenting skills.  Go to  https://veterantraining.va.gov to get started.

Closing of Hanscom AFB Medical Practice

January 25, 2022. Starting February 1, 2022, our medical practice at Hanscom AFB will be closing. Plan members were sent a letter in in December about the change and about options for care, which include seeing Mara Wermuth, NP; Dr. Larry Chin; Dr. Lester Sheehan (orthopedics); Dr. Scott Horwitz (podiatry); and other providers at St. Elizabeth's Health Care at Brighton Marine, 77 Warren Street, in Brighton, MA. Please call Member Services at 800.818.8589 with any questions you may have or for help finding a provider near you.

Addition of Audio-Only Health Care Visits

US Family Health Plan now cover7s audio-only telehealth services. This allows members to continue care with in-network providers who may not usually use telemedicine. It allows members who don’t have in-home technology, such as smartphones or computers, or who are in rural areas without broadband internet, to access care.