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OC Health Care Agency now offering Novavax vaccine for COVID-19 and Flu vaccines

The OC Health Care Agency (HCA) has begun administering Novavax vaccines at HCA-managed vaccination sites, beginning this week. Flu vaccines are also now being offered. Though COVID-19 cases are currently declining in Orange County, the HCA encourages individuals who are not yet vaccinated against COVID-19 and influenza (flu) to get vaccinated.

“Studies continue to show that receiving a COVID-19 vaccine reduces infections, hospitalizations and deaths,” says Dr. Regina Chinsio-Kwong, County Health Officer. “As we begin the flu season, getting infected with COVID-19 as well as the flu is a real possibility for anyone who is not yet vaccinated against either disease or is at risk. We encourage the public to protect themselves and loved ones by advocating for COVID-19 and flu vaccination.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and American Academy of Pediatrics, flu vaccines can be safely co-administered with COVID-19 vaccines for both eligible children and adults. Eligible residents can register for an appointment by visiting www.Othena.com.

Novavax is a 2-dose vaccine, given three weeks apart. In early 2021, it was found to be 90% effective against mild, moderate and severe disease in a trial of 30,000 people ages 18 and older. Residents 12 years and older are eligible to receive the Novavax vaccine, however it isn’t authorized for use as a booster or for children 11 and younger. See Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) here

Unlike the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines, the Novavax vaccine was developed without the use of mRNA technology. Rather, Novavax directly delivers the spike protein plus an immune system which is the same mechanism used successfully in vaccines for shingles, HPV, hepatitis B and childhood vaccines for diphtheria and tetanus.

Anyone currently unvaccinated for COVID-19 and seeking the Novavax vaccine, can visit www.othena.com to schedule an appointment. Some pharmacy locations are also offering Novavax through www.vaccines.gov.

If you have questions about Novavax or the flu vaccine, talk to your primary care provider. For more information and resources on influenza, visit Influenza | Orange County California – Health Care Agency (ochealthinfo.com) or call HCA’s Health Referral Line at 1-800-564-8448.

For more information on COVID-19 information and resources, including case counts, vaccination, and testing in Orange County, visit ochealthinfo.com/covid or call HCA’s Health Referral Line at 1-800-564-8448.

This article was released by the Orange County Health Care Agency.