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Indiana coronavirus updates for Friday, April 1, 2022

The latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic for Friday, April 1, 2022.

INDIANAPOLIS — Here are Friday's latest updates on the coronavirus pandemic, including the latest news on COVID-19 vaccinations and testing in Indiana.

Registrations for the vaccine are now open for Hoosiers 5 and older through the Indiana Department of Health. This story will be updated over the course of the day with more news on the COVID-19 pandemic.

RELATED: Here's everything we know about the COVID-19 vaccine

RELATED: US launches covid.gov site

Purdue ends surveillance testing

Purdue University is ending surveillance testing for students and employees not vaccinated against COVID-19. The ending of testing is effective April 1.

Biolermakers had the choice of either getting vaccinated or participating in routine surveillance testing.  

The university said its campus community is now 90% vaccinated and the overall immunity is more than 92%.

Since March 18, more than 2,000 surveillance tests have been performed, and only six positive cases were found – which is a 0.3% positivity rate.

Targeted testing will continue where potential spread of coronavirus is possible.

Surveillance testing could be reinstated if there is a surge in case numbers or new variants emerge.

Latest US, world numbers

There have been more than 80.1 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States as of 5:30 a.m. ET Friday, according to Johns Hopkins University. There have been more than 980,600 deaths recorded in the U.S.

Worldwide, there have been more than 488.45 million confirmed coronavirus cases with more than 6.14 million deaths and more than 10.88 billion vaccine doses administered.

BA.2, or 'stealth' omicron subvariant, is now dominant strain in US

During a briefing on March 14, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki acknowledged that BA.2 has “circulated in the United States for some time.” 

From March 20-26, BA.2 accounted for nearly 55% of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., according to estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). That’s compared to about 40% of cases attributed to BA.1, the original version of omicron. 

The World Health Organization (WHO) said in a report on March 22 that BA.2 made up 86% of cases reported to the global public health agency between Feb. 16 and March 17.

RELATED: Yes, BA.2, or ‘stealth’ omicron, subvariant is now dominant in the U.S.

BA.2 appears to have a “faster growth rate” than the original version of omicron, Payal Kohli, M.D., assistant clinical professor of medicine at University of Colorado’s Anschutz Medical Campus, said. 

Medical experts believe BA.2 is about 1.5 times more transmissible than BA.1, Saralyn Mark, M.D., former senior medical advisor to the White House and American Medical Women's Association COVID-19 Lead, added. 

Vaccines provide the same level of protection against severe illness and hospitalization of the BA.2 subvariant compared to other variants, experts say.

US launches covid.gov website

The Biden administration rolled out covid.gov, what it says is a one-stop website that will help people in the United States access COVID-19 tests, vaccines and treatments, along with status updates on infection rates where they live.

“Now, with a click of a button, people will be able to find where to access all of these tools,” the White House said. People will also be able to find the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on COVID-19 in their community.

2nd COVID-19 booster shot available to Hoosiers 50 and up

The Indiana Department of Health announced Wednesday that Hoosiers age 50 and older, as well as those 12 and older with weakened immune systems, are now eligible to receive a second mRNA COVID-19 booster shot at least four months after their first booster dose.

The announcement comes one day after the Food and Drug Administration authorized an extra dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine for that age group and and certain younger people with severely weakened immune systems.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention later recommended the extra shot as an option but stopped short of urging that those eligible rush out and get it right away.

The IDOH is advising vaccine providers that they can begin administering second boosters of the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines to people who qualify.

The CDC also says that adults who received a primary vaccine and booster dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine at least four months ago may now receive a second booster dose of either mRNA vaccine.

You can find a vaccine location at ourshot.in.gov or by calling Indiana 211 (866-211-9966). Appointments are recommended, but many sites do accept walk-ins.

Marion County COVID-19 vaccination and test clinics continue

The Marion County Public Health Department (MCPHD) continues to provide free COVID-19 vaccination and testing to anyone interested in receiving these services.

MCPHD is operating one COVID-19 testing site, which is a drive-thru clinic located at 3838 N. Rural St. in Indianapolis.

The clinic's current hours are Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. This clinic offers PCR testing only and no rapid testing. A list of additional test sites registered with the Indiana Department of Health is available at coronavirus.in.gov.

Appointments for COVID-19 testing at the MCPHD location are not required but are available by visiting marionhealth.org/indycovid or calling 317-221-5515.

MCPHD is also offering COVID-19 vaccines at its district health offices, ACTION Health Center, and four other locations in Marion County. Appointments for vaccines are not required but are recommended. 

Please visit ourshot.in.gov or call 2-1-1 to find a vaccination clinic.

Marion County March clinic schedule

  • Northeast District Health Office, 6042 E. 21st St.
    Mondays: 12 p.m. - 4 p.m.
    Tuesdays: 3 p.m. - 7 p.m.
  • Eagledale Plaza Health Office, 2802 Lafayette Road
    Tuesdays: 8 a.m. - 12 p.m.
  • Northwest District Health Office, 6940 N. Michigan Road
    Thursdays: 3 p.m. - 7 p.m.
  • South District Health Office, 7551 S. Shelby St.
    Mondays: 3 p.m. - 7 p.m.
    Fridays: 8 a.m. - 12 p.m.
  • ACTION Health Center, 2868 N. Pennsylvania St.
    Wednesdays: 3 p.m. - 5 p.m.
  • Martindale-Brightwood Public Library Branch, 2435 N. Sherman Drive (ages 12-over only)
    Tuesday through Friday: 10 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
    Saturdays: 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • College Avenue Public Library Branch, 4180 N. College Ave. (ages 12-over only)
    Tuesday through Friday: 10 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
    Saturdays: 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • East 38th Street Public Library Branch, 5420 E. 38th St.  (ages 12-over only)
    Tuesday through Friday: 10 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
    Saturdays: 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • IndyGo Carson Transit Center, 201 E. Washington St.  (ages 12-over only)
    Tuesdays: 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
    Wednesdays: 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
    Thursdays: 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

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