COVID Vaccines, Testing & Treatment

COVID-19 Vaccine

RIMG is offering the MODERNA COVID-19 vaccine to individuals 18 and older! 

Who: Any individual 18 years and above for initial dose. Moderately to severely immunocompromised individuals for boosters.  *Now accepting non-RIMG patients and appointments for 2nd doses if 1st dose was received at another site.*

What: Moderna vaccine (2 appointments, 4 weeks apart) or booster at least 4 weeks from last dose.

When: By appointment only

Where: Main Office: 1201 Seven Locks Road, Suite 111, Rockville, MD 20854.

How to Schedule: The fastest and most efficient way to schedule is through our online scheduling portal. If you are checking your eligibility to receive a booster, you must complete this form in order to schedule. RIMG will automatically schedule your second dose appointment 4 weeks after your first dose appointment at the same time as your first vaccination. *Please make sure you can attend both appointments when scheduling as we do not have flexibility to change second dose appointments.* 

Please complete the pre-vaccination checklist below and bring to your vaccine appointment.

Do I need a Booster Vaccine?

If you received Pfizer:

Updated guidance posted on the CDC’s website outlines the recommendations; in each case, the Pfizer booster shots would be given at least six months after a person’s second dose:

  • People 65 years and older and residents in long-term care settings should receive a booster.
  • People aged 50–64 years with underlying medical conditions should receive a booster.
  • People aged 18–49 years with underlying medical conditions may receive a booster, based on their individual benefits and risks.
  • People aged 18-64 years who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission because of occupational or institutional setting may receive a booster, based on their individual benefits and risks.

**( please go to your local pharmacy or community vaccination site if you qualify – we do not have Pfizer for administration )** 

If you received Moderna:

Currently, CDC is recommending that ONLY moderately to severely immunocompromised people who received Pfizer or Moderna receive an additional dose. This includes people who have:
-Been receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood
-Received an organ transplant
-Received a stem cell transplant within the last 2 years
-Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (such as DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
-Advanced or untreated HIV infection
-Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids or other drugs that may suppress your immune response

** You must complete this form to verify eligibility and you will then be contacted to schedule. We will NOT be accepting appointments via phone.**

If you received J&J:

We don’t have guidance yet from the CDC regarding boosters for those patients that have received the J&J vaccine.

Can I get the COVID and FLU vaccine together?

YES! Current guidance for the use of COVID-19 vaccines states that these vaccines may be administered with other vaccines including the flu vaccine.

Where else can I get the Vaccine?

The vaccines are readily available at local pharmacies and state run clinics.

What is the COVID-19 vaccine?

There are currently three vaccines available in the US: Pfizer,  Moderna & Johnson & Johnson (Janssen). Pfizer now has full FDA approval. Moderna and J&J are under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). 

Should you get the COVID-19 vaccine?

RIMG strongly recommends that anyone eligible should get any COVID-19 vaccine when available to them. 

Rochelle P. Walensky, MD, MPH, director of CDC: “We all know that the more viruses replicate they more they mutate. The more they mutate, the more we’re likely to see dominant variants that could really emerge and become a problem for us. So the best thing that we can do to prevent these, in general, is to have less disease circulating, less virus circulating. And the way to decrease the amount of virus circulating is to get as many people vaccinated as possible, as quickly as possible, and to continue preventive measures like mask wearing and physical distancing. So while a lot needs to happen at the level of scientific institutions and governments, of no less importance is continued adherence to basic public health measures on the part of every individual around the globe.”

Essentially, doing your part by getting vaccinated will help with possible COVID variants and reemergence of disease.

This is a helpful video explaining COVID vaccines and variants.

When can you get the COVID-19 vaccine?

All Marylanders 12 and older are eligible for COVID-19 vaccination. Currently, Moderna and J&J are approved for age 18 and older and Pfizer is approved for age 12 and older.

COVID-19 Testing & Treatment

If you are currently ill with COVID, have COVID symptoms please schedule a virtual visit ASAP. We can discuss your eligibility for treatments such as Monoclonal Antibodies and arrange testing in house with a same day COVID PCR test.  

If you need ASYMPTOMATIC testing (i.e. after travel or after a covid exposure) no appointment prior is needed, simply call to schedule COVID testing. COVID testing after an exposure is ideally done 5 days post exposure. Please Refer to the CDC website for recommendations on how to proceed after a possible COVID exposure.

There are 2 types of COVID tests available at RIMG: a PCR (Nasal Swab), and the Serum Antibody blood  test (to test for immunity/past exposure).A virtual visit with one of our providers is required prior to testing. 

What do the COVID-19 tests detect?

PCR (Nasal Swab): This test will detect if you are actively infected with the COVID-19 virus. We have a Same-Day PCR test available

Serum Antibody (Blood Test): This test will detect if you have had prior exposure to COVID-19 and/or have built an antibody for the virus from a vaccine. For most viral illnesses, a positive antibody means prior exposure to a virus and some degree of immunity to future infection. As COVID-19 is a novel (new) infection, it is unclear if a positive antibody definitively offers immunity and is not recommended as a screening test for immunity by the CDC. Despite a positive antibody test, the recommendation is to still practice universal precautions.

*Please note, that the FDA is advising against the use of SARS-CoV-2 antibody tests to evaluate immunity from Covid-19 after vaccination.*

What testing do I need?

PCR Nasal swab:

  • If you are actively experiencing COVID-19 symptoms such as Fever or chills, Cough, Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, Fatigue, Muscle or body aches, Headache, New loss of taste or smell, Sore throat, Congestion or runny nose, Nausea or vomiting, Diarrhea
  •  Asymptomatic travel
  • After COVID-19 exposure

Serum Antibody (Blood Test): 

  • If you previously had COVID-19 symptoms (Fever, persistent cough, shortness of breath, body aches) and have recovered after 14 days.
  • If you received a positive test result for COVID-19 and have recovered after 14 days.

How are these tests administered?

PCR  (Nasal Swab): Administered via a nasal swab. Schedule a virtual visit with one of our providers for testing. An order is required. 

PCR testing is being completed at:

  • Suite 216: Drive to the back of our building and park near the black ramp. 
    • *By appointment only* during office hours
    •  There is no access to SUITE 216 through the front of the building
    • Please come at your designated appointment time

Serum Antibody Blood Test: Blood sample taken at a lab. An order is required. 

How long will it take to receive my results and how do I view them?

PCR (Nasal Swab): Your results can be viewed via your patient portal account and you will receive an email/text notification once they are available the same day.  If you prefer a phone call with your results, please let your provider know

Serum Antibody Blood Test: Generally, it will take about 2 days to receive your antibody results. Your results can be viewed via your patient portal account and you will receive an email/text notification once they are available. 

What platform do you use for testing?

Same-Day PCR testing is done via the Cepheid system.

We are performing the Vitros SARS-CoV-2 Total Antibody test in our lab (tests for IgG, IgM and IgA- both active and past infection). This specific antibody test has approval for FDA Emergency Use and has a 100% specificity. If your insurance requires you to go to Labcorp or Quest for lab draws, then we can order through their platform.