With more than 620,000 Prince George’s County residents receiving at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, certain restrictions on businesses and other activities plan to be lifted by 5 p.m. Monday, May 17.
County Executive Angela Alsobrooks made the announcement during a telephone town hall Tuesday, May 11 with specific details scheduled to be released this week.
To encourage residents who still remain unvaccinated, the county will host a 24-hour “vaccine-a-thon” starting at 9 a.m. Friday, May 14 at the Wayne K. Curry Sports and Learning Center in Landover. The event will collaborate with the county’s Commission for Fathers, Men and Boys with radio personality Joe Clair and special guest, Experience Unlimited’s Gregory “Sugar Bear” Elliot.
“We’ll continue to do whatever we can to ensure that every resident of Prince George’s County has the opportunity to receive this vaccine,” Alsobrooks said. “I’m so proud of the effort we have done to get to this point but we have to do more.”
Some of those vaccination efforts rely on faith-based organizations such as First Baptist Church of Glenarden in Upper Marlboro to house clinics.
The church opened its Family Life Center doors without an appointment necessary Tuesday and Wednesday for people such as Iyanna Proctor to receive the first of the two-dose Pfizer- BioNTech vaccine.
“I had family members that had COVID-19 and I wanted to be protected,” said Proctor, 31 who works as a fast-food restaurant.
Beatrice Shonubi of Bowie called her scheduled appointment “an answered prayer.”
“God does not work in our ways. He gave these scientists the wherewithal to speed this up so we can get things done,” she said Tuesday, May 11 outside the church’s Family Life Center in Upper Marlboro. “But all of a sudden people are hesitant, or not sure this is what we need to go. You can’t legislate how God moves. We all should get on board and get it done.”
As of Tuesday, more than 254,000 county residents ages 16 and older have been fully vaccinated.
In terms of age groups in Prince George’s, those ages 50 to 59 lead the pack with almost 120,000 vaccinated.
Numbers could rise further after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted authorization Monday, May 10 to allow adolescents ages 12 to 15 to receiver the Pfizer vaccine.
President Joe Biden said he wants at least 70% of Americans vaccinated by July 4.
The CDC reported Tuesday about 59% of Americans ages 16 and older have been vaccinated.
The Maryland Department of Health reports about 65% of adults received a vaccine with nearly 2.4 million people fully vaccinated.
And at the state’s 13 mass vaccination sites that include Six Flags America in Upper Marlboro and the clinic operated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency at the Greenbelt Metro station, residents can get their shot without an appointment.
“We remain laser-focused on making sure no arm is left behind and have adapted our efforts for this new phase of the vaccination campaign,” Gov. Larry Hogan said in a statement. “If you haven’t yet been vaccinated, please get your vaccine immediately to keep you, your family, friends and neighbors safe so we can put this pandemic behind us and get back to normal.”