DPH News Release: Centralized Scheduling Tool for Monkeypox Vaccine Now Available on DPH Website


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:     Aug. 15, 2022


Centralized Scheduling Tool for Monkeypox Vaccine Now Available on DPH Website

ATLANTA – The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) has launched an online, centralized scheduling tool and helpline to locate and make appointments for monkeypox vaccine. To schedule a monkeypox vaccine visit dph.ga.gov/monkeypox and click on the Learn More tab under “Find a Vaccine and Register for an Appointment”. You may also call the Vaccine Scheduling Resource Line at (888) 457-0186

The scheduling tool allows you to choose a first or second dose of Jynneos™ monkeypox vaccine from a dropdown menu. Because monkeypox vaccine supply remains limited, you will be asked to answer a series of questions that help DPH prioritize vaccine to individuals who may have been exposed to monkeypox. The questions follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for administering monkeypox vaccine.

The monkeypox scheduling tool simplifies finding vaccine and scheduling a monkeypox vaccination anywhere in the state by having all available appointments in one place instead of having to search individual health department websites. The availability of vaccines will be updated regularly to reflect the allocation of vaccine that Georgia receives from the federal government.

The monkeypox virus can spread from person-to-person through direct contact with the infectious rash, scabs, or body fluids. It also can be spread by respiratory secretions during prolonged, face-to-face contact, or during intimate physical contact, such as kissing, cuddling, or sex. While more than 90% of those affected in the current global outbreak are gay, bisexual, or other men who have sex with men, anyone who has been in close contact with someone who has monkeypox can be infected.

If you think you may have monkeypox, seek testing as soon as possible. To avoid potential spread of monkeypox to others, stay isolated until your rash has healed, and a new layer of skin has formed.

There are things you can do to protect yourself from getting monkeypox:

  • Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with people who have a rash that looks like
  • Do not touch the rash or scabs of a person with
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer

For more information about monkeypox, visit https://dph.georgia.gov/monkeypox or https://www.cdc.gov/poxvirus/monkeypox/index.html.



Avoid the Back to School Rush

Date: July 8, 2022

Natasha Young, Public Information Officer
Phone: 770-531-5679 • Fax: 770-535-5958
Email: natasha.young@dph.ga.gov


GAINESVILLE – District 2 Public Health encourages you to plan early for back-to-school immunizations and health screenings. Ensure your children are ready to begin the upcoming school year by getting them up-to-date on their school health requirements. Beat the rush, and get your children in today for their routine vaccines and health screenings!

“Certain age groups have specific requirements for their back to school immunizations,” says Leyna Mashburn, District 2 Immunization Coordinator. “It is important to check with your medical provider early to determine what, if any, vaccines are needed for your child.”

Last year, the state of Georgia added a new meningitis vaccine requirement for 11th graders. If you are unsure of Georgia’s school requirements, now is the time to check with your children’s doctor, school, or the local health department to determine what is needed.

Some health departments will partner with local schools and organizations for back-to-school events in July and August. Even in counties having these special events, you may still visit your local health department during regular business hours for routine immunizations and health screens.

For those who are uninsured or anyone with insurance that does not cover vaccines, the cost for children’s vaccines is $21 per vaccine. Medicaid and some private insurances are accepted. Contact your county health department for more information about your specific insurance plan.

For a list of back-to-school health events available in your county and for health department hours and locations visit phdistrict2.org. To learn more about Georgia’s school health requirements, visit the Georgia DPH website.


Covid-19 Vaccines Now Available to Children Six Months of Age and Older


DATE: June 27, 2022
Natasha Young, Public Information Officer
PH: 770-531-5679 • FAX: 770-535-5958

GAINESVILLE – COVID-19 vaccines are now authorized for everyone six months of age and older. Children will get a smaller dose of the vaccine than teens and adults based on their age on the day of vaccination. COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective at preventing severe illness from COVID-19 and limiting the spread of the virus that causes it.

District 2 Public Health Medical Director, Zachary Taylor, MD., says, “Parents should discuss with their pediatrician or family doctor about vaccinating their child with the COVID-19 vaccine.”

The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is now available at all District 2 health departments for children six months and older. The Moderna vaccine will be arriving soon. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is not authorized for children.

The CDC recommends COVID-19 primary series vaccines for everyone who is six months and older, and COVID- 19 boosters for everyone five years and older, if eligible. You are protected best from COVID-19 when you stay up to date with the recommended vaccines. Vaccine recommendations vary depending on your age, type of vaccine received, and timing of your last dose.

Children five to eleven years old should get two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine three to eight weeks apart, and should receive their booster dose five months after their primary series has been completed.

Children six months to four years old should receive three doses total. Once a child is vaccinated with their first dose, they should receive their second dose three to eight weeks later; however, the interval between the second dose and the third dose is eight weeks.

District 2 public health departments offer walk-in appointments for COVID-19 vaccines. Visit phdistrict2.org to find a health department location in your county.

To learn more about COVID-19 vaccines for adults and children go to cdc.gov/coronavirus.


Order Your At-Home Covid-19 Test Kits Today

DATE: May 31, 2022

Natasha Young, Public Information Officer
PH: 770-531-5679 • FAX: 770-535-5958

GAINESVILLE – COVID-19 testing remains important in the fight against community spread. Free COVID-19 at-home test kits are available through a partnership with the federal government and the United States Postal Service.

Help protect your community against COVID-19, order your at-home test kit by visiting covid.gov/tests or order by phone in English or Spanish by calling 1-800-232-0233. Individuals with impaired hearing who require assistance should call TTY 1-888-720-7489.

Each household will receive:

  • 8 rapid antigen COVID-19 tests
  • Your order of 8 tests will come in 2 separate packages (4 tests in each package), each with its own tracking number
  • Packages will ship free

When to test for COVID-19:

  • You have any COVID-19 symptoms, test immediately
  • You were exposed to someone with COVID-19, test at least 5 days after your exposure (If you test negative for COVID-19, consider testing again 1 to 2 days after your first test)
  • You are going to an indoor event or a gathering, test immediately before the gathering, or as close to the time of the event as possible.

Every household in the U.S. is eligible to order at-home test kits. Order your free COVID-19 test kits at covid.gov/tests today.

Travel Health Clinic to Open at Forsyth County Health Department

DATE: May 27, 2022

Natasha Young, Public Information Officer
PH: 770-531-5679 • FAX: 770-535-5958

CUMMING – Travel season is fast approaching. This year is set to become a very busy travel season compared to the previous two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Forsyth County Health Department will open an international travel clinic to provide travel consultations, vaccinations, and medications starting June 1.

The travel nurse specialist will provide important health advice concerning your travel destination. During your visit, discuss your travel plan with your nurse to determine what destination–specific vaccines and medicines are needed. Nurses will go over routine, required and recommended vaccines as well as preventative medications during the consultation. You can receive your vaccines on the day of the consultation, a separate vaccination appointment is not required.

Plan your clinic visit early, six to eight weeks before you leave for your trip is recommended. Most insurances will not cover the cost of travel vaccines, contact your insurance company for its specific travel vaccine policy.

Travel smart while traveling abroad. Schedule your travel appointment by contacting the Forsyth County Health Department at 770-781-6900. Clinic hours are Monday, Wednesday and Thursday 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, Tuesday 8:00 am to 7:00 pm and Friday 8:00 am to 12:00 pm.

For more information regarding travel vaccines visit the CDC website to learn more.