Free COVID-19 Vaccine Available for Age 12+; Pfizer Booster Shots Available. Info on COVID-19 Vaccine, Testing, Data:
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The Coastal Health District of Georgia serves the counties of Bryan, Camden, Chatham, Effingham, Glynn, Liberty, Long & McIntosh

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Chatham County Health Department Operational Update

The Chatham County Health Department at 1395 Eisenhower Drive will resume normal operations beginning Monday, October 18th, providing all public health services.

The health department previously scaled back at that location, offering only essential services to accommodate the demand for COVID-19 booster shots. That demand has stabilized, and health department staff can now provide COVID-19 vaccinations along with all other services. Appointments continue to be required for all services.

COVID-19 vaccination appointments are available at the COVID-19 Vaccination Annex at 1249 Eisenhower Drive, the West Chatham clinic at 171 Crossroads Parkway at Gulfstream, and downtown at Fire Station #3 at 121 East Oglethorpe Avenue.

Days, hours, and vaccine brands vary at each location, so please visit chdcovidvax.org for more details and to schedule an appointment. For assistance, you may also call our COVID-19 Vaccination Phone Bank at 912-230-5506 Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., and Friday from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Beach Water Advisories Lifted

Updated on October 14, 2021:

The previous advisories for Captain Wylly Road Crossover Beach and Middle Beach at the Convention Center on Jekyll Island have been lifted. The advisories were issued October 13th after routine water quality tests showed a high level of enterococci bacteria which increase the risk of gastrointestinal illness in swimmers.

Subsequent water samples showed that the bacteria levels had dropped below Environmental Protection Agency’s recommended limits. Therefore, the advisories have been lifted.


October 13, 2021:

The Glynn County Health Department has issued beach water advisories for the following beaches on Jekyll Island.

  • Captain Wylly Road Crossover Beach: from Brice Lane to the Beach Pavilion
  • Middle Beach at the Convention Center: from the Beach Pavilion to Corsair Beach Park
graphic showing the beach water advisory signs

The Department of Natural Resources – Coastal Resources Division tests water samples at Glynn County beaches throughout the year. The test screens for enterococcus (pronounced: en·ter·o·coc·cus) bacteria, which are found in humans and some wildlife. The testing program is not related to the capsized motor vehicle carrier in St. Simons Sound.

When a beach is under advisory, it means the level of bacteria found in the water is above the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) recommended standards. Periodic advisories are not unusual, and sources of the bacteria could include animal waste, storm water runoff, or boating waste.

The advisory does NOT mean the beach is closed. Beach water advisories alert the public of a possible risk of illness associated with water contact in the advisory areas. The Health Department recommends you do not swim or wade in the water in the area under advisory. Fish and other seafood caught from the area should be thoroughly washed with fresh water and thoroughly cooked before eating, as should fish or seafood caught from any waters.

The areas will be re-tested this week, and the advisories will be lifted when the bacteria levels meet the EPA’s recommended standards. For more information, visit our Beach Water Testing page.

West Nile Virus Detected in Camden Co. Mosquito Sample

Tests conducted by the Camden County Mosquito Control Services has detected West Nile Virus (WNV) in a sample of mosquitoes collected this week in St. Marys. Once WNV is detected in mosquitoes it is an indication that the virus is actively circulating in local mosquito populations, regardless of the specific location of positive mosquito pools, and appropriate precautions should be taken.

Mosquito Control Services has increased prevention measures in the area, but residents are also encouraged to follow the “5 Ds” of mosquito bite prevention:

  • Dress – Wear loose-fitting, long-sleeved shirts and pants to reduce the amount of exposed skin.
  • DEET – Cover exposed skin with an insect repellent containing the DEET, which is the most effective repellent against mosquito bites.
  • Drain – Empty any outdoor containers holding standing water because they are breeding grounds for virus-carrying mosquitoes.
  • Doors – Make sure doors and windows are in good repair and fit tightly and fix torn or damaged screens to keep mosquitoes out of the house.
  • Dusk/Dawn – Avoid dusk and dawn activities during the summer when mosquitoes are most active.

WNV is transmitted to humans by the bite of infected mosquitoes. Fortunately, most people infected with WNV do not feel sick and about 20% of people who are infected will have mild symptoms, but WNV can also cause serious illness. There has been one confirmed human case of WNV this year in Georgia and none in the eight Coastal Health District counties.

For more information on mosquito-borne illnesses, please visit our website at gachd.org/mosquitoes.

Beach Water Advisory Lifted for Jekyll Island

Update on October 6, 2021:

The previous advisory for Captain Wylly Road Crossover Beach on Jekyll Island has been lifted. The advisory was issued October 5th after routine water quality tests showed a high level of enterococci bacteria which increase the risk of gastrointestinal illness in swimmers.

Subsequent water samples showed that the bacteria levels had dropped below Environmental Protection Agency’s recommended limits. Therefore, the advisories have been lifted.


October 5, 2021:

The Glynn County Health Department has issued a swimming advisory for Capt. Wylly Road Crossover Beach, which is from Brice Lane to the beach pavilion on Jekyll Island.

graphic showing the beach water advisory signs

The Department of Natural Resources – Coastal Resources Division tests water samples at Glynn County beaches throughout the year. The test screens for enterococcus (pronounced:
en·ter·o·coc·cus) bacteria, which are found in humans and some wildlife. The testing program is not related to the capsized motor vehicle carrier in St. Simons Sound.

When a beach is under advisory, it means the level of bacteria found in the water is above the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) recommended standards. Periodic advisories are not unusual, and sources of the bacteria could include animal waste, storm water runoff, or boating waste.

The advisory does NOT mean the beach is closed. Beach water advisories alert the public of a possible risk of illness associated with water contact in the advisory areas. The Health Department recommends you do not swim or wade in the water in the area under advisory. Fish and other seafood caught from the area should be thoroughly washed with fresh water and thoroughly cooked before eating, as should fish or seafood caught from any waters.

The area will be re-tested this week, and the advisory will be lifted when the bacteria levels meet the EPA’s recommended standards. For more information, visit our Beach Water Testing page.

Flu Vaccine Available Starting October 4; Drive-Through Vaccination Clinics Scheduled in Some Counties

Health departments in Bryan, Camden, Chatham, Effingham, Glynn, Liberty, Long, and McIntosh counties will begin offering flu vaccine on Monday, October 4th.

Some counties will also hold drive-through vaccination clinics:

McIntosh County
Friday, October 15
8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.
McIntosh County Health Department, Hwy. 57, Townsend

Camden County
Saturday, November 6
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Camden County Resiliency Operations Center (formerly Georgia Power), 135 Gross Road, Kingsland

Long County
Monday, November 8
8 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Long County Health Department, 584 N. Macon Street, Ludowici.

The Liberty County Health Department will hold a special flu vaccination clinic on Tuesday, October 26th, at the health department located at 1113 E. Oglethorpe Highway in Hinesville. Appointments are required and can be made by calling 912-876-2173.

The flu vaccine is recommended for everyone over six months of age. Vaccination is particularly important for those at high risk of complications from flu, including adults 65 and older, children younger than five, pregnant women, and people with chronic health conditions such as asthma and diabetes. It takes about two weeks after getting a flu shot for the vaccine to provide the body protection against the flu.

Flu vaccines and COVID-19 vaccines can be given at the same time. Preventive measures like washing your hands and wearing a mask can also help prevent the spread of influenza and COVID-19.

“Flu season is always unpredictable, but maybe even more so this year,” said District Health Director, Dr. Lawton Davis. “We had little to no flu season at all in 2020, likely because of all the precautions we were taking to prevent COVID. That means we don’t really know what an active flu season combined with widely circulating COVID-19 will look like, but it has the potential to be very, very serious. Please get vaccinated against COVID and flu.”

To get more information on the flu or to download the vaccine consent form ahead of time, please visit gachd.org/flu.

For more information on seasonal flu and COVID-19, including similarities and differences, please visit the CDC’s website.

Pfizer Booster Shots Available in the Coastal Health District

Beginning Monday, Sept. 27, the Coastal Health District will offer Pfizer booster shots as recommended by the Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for Disease Control, and the Georgia Department of Public Health. Booster doses have been approved for the following individuals who received Pfizer vaccine more than six months ago:

  • Individuals aged 65 and older,
  • Residents in long-term care settings,
  • Individuals aged 18 and older with certain underlying medical conditions, and
  • Individuals aged 18 and older who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure because of where they work or live.

Booster shots have not yet been approved for anyone who received Moderna or Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccines. Please note: not every health department has Pfizer vaccine available. The following locations do offer Pfizer vaccine by appointment, and can give booster doses to eligible individuals. Dates and hours vary at each location.

  • Chatham Co. Health Dept. Annex (former EmployAbility building) – 1249 Eisenhower Dr.
  • West Chatham Site @ Gulfstream – 171 Crossroads Parkway, Savannah
  • Savannah Fire Station #3 – 121 East Oglethorpe Ave., Savannah
  • Glynn Co. Health Department – 2747 Fourth St., Brunswick
  • Effingham Co. Health Department – 802 Hwy. 119 South, Springfield
  • Liberty Co. Health Dept. – 1113 East Oglethorpe Hwy., Hinesville

Please visit chdcovidvax.org for more details and to schedule an appointment. For assistance, you may also call our COVID-19 Vaccination Phone Bank at 912-230-5506 Monday – Thursday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., and Friday from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.

The Coastal Health District continues to stress the importance of vaccination for all Georgians aged 12 and older. Vaccination is our best tool to protect lives and stop the spread of COVID-19 in our state.

Breast Cancer Screenings Offered in October

Health departments throughout the Coastal Health District will hold breast cancer screening events throughout the month of October which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in woman after skin cancer. It is estimated that about one in eight women in the United States will develop breast cancer over the course of her lifetime.

“Early detection is critical,” said Coastal Health District Women’s Health and Adult Health Coordinator, Mary Ellen Smith, MSN, WHNP BC. “The earlier breast cancer is detected, the easier it is to treat.”

Women who meet certain annual income guidelines and are 40-64 years of age without insurance will be eligible to receive mammograms or breast exams and mammogram referrals at no cost as part of the Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (BCCP). BCCP provides access to breast and cervical cancer screening for women who may not otherwise have the means to access such services.

In counties where mammograms are being offered, women who have an order from their healthcare provider or have insurance can still get a mammogram, but it will not be covered through the BCCP program.

Door prizes will be given to everyone receiving screening services at all county breast cancer awareness events, while supplies last.

For more information on BCCP, please visit our website at gachd.org/bccp.

Coastal Health District Breast Cancer Awareness Events

Bryan County
Date: Tuesday, October 19
Time: 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Location: Bryan County Health Department, 430 Ledford Street, Pembroke
Service offered: Clinical breast exams and mammogram referrals
Call 912-653-4331 to schedule an appointment.

Camden County
Date: Thursday, October 28
Time: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Location: Camden County Health Department, 905 Dilworth Street, St. Marys
Service offered: Clinical breast exams and mammogram referrals
Call 912-912-882-8515 or 912-576-3040 to schedule an appointment.

Effingham County
Date: Wednesday, October 6
Time: 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Location: Effingham County Health Department, 802 GA Hwy. 119 South, Springfield
Service offered: Clinical breast exams and mammogram referrals
Call 912-754-6484 to schedule an appointment.

Glynn County
Date: Tuesday, October 5
Time: 9 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Location: Glynn County Health Department, 2747 Fourth Street, Brunswick
Service offered: Mammograms
Call 912-264-3961 to schedule an appointment.

Liberty County
Date: Wednesday, October 13
Time: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Location: Liberty County Health Department, 1113 E. Oglethorpe Hwy., Hinesville
Service offered: Mammograms
Appointments encouraged; walk-ins accepted. Call 912-876-2171 to schedule an appointment.

Long County
Date: Tuesday, October 19
Time: 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Location: Long County Health Department, 57 North Macon Street, Ludowici
Service offered: Mammograms
Call 912-545-2107 to schedule an appointment.

McIntosh County
Date: Monday, October 25
Time: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Location: The Coastal Market, 5214 US 17, Darien
Service offered: Mammograms
NO APPOINTMENT NECESSARY
*God’s Ocean food truck will be on site and offer a 20% discount to those receiving mammograms that day.

More West Nile Virus Detected in Mosquito Samples from Wilmington Island

Chatham County Mosquito Control has confirmed an additional mosquito sample collected from Wilmington Island has tested positive for West Nile Virus (WNV). WNV was originally detected in mosquito pools on the Island at the end of August. WNV is transmitted to humans by the bite of infected mosquitoes. Fortunately, most people infected with WNV do not feel sick and about 20% of people who are infected will have mild symptoms, but WNV can also cause serious illness.

Residents are strongly encouraged to take precautions against mosquito breeding and mosquito bites by:

  • Cleaning up around their homes, yards, and neighborhoods. Tip over things such as planters, children’s toys, and buckets after every rain and toss out unnecessary items that can hold water and become mosquito breeding grounds.
  • Clean out gutters, remove piles of leaves, and keep vegetation cut low to prevent landing sites for adult mosquitoes.

Residents are always encouraged to follow the “5 Ds” of mosquito bite prevention:

  • Dusk/Dawn – Avoid dusk and dawn activities during the summer when mosquitoes are most active.
  • Dress – Wear loose-fitting, long-sleeved shirts and pants to reduce the amount of exposed skin.
  • DEET – Cover exposed skin with an insect repellent containing the DEET, which is the most effective repellent against mosquito bites.
  • Drain – Empty any outdoor containers holding standing water because they are breeding grounds for virus-carrying mosquitoes.
  • Doors – Make sure doors and windows are in good repair and fit tightly and fix torn or damaged screens to keep mosquitoes out of the house.

Beach Advisory Lifted on St. Simons Island South Beach

Updated September 23, 2021

The Glynn County Health Department has lifted the beach water advisory for South Beach at the Lighthouse, which extends from 9th Street to the Pier on St. Simons Island.

The advisory was issued on September 21, 2021, after routine water quality tests showed a high level of enterococci bacteria which increase the risk of gastrointestinal illness in swimmers.

Subsequent water samples show the bacteria level has dropped below the Environmental Protection Agency’s recommended limits. Therefore, the advisory has been lifted.


September 21, 2021

The Glynn County Health Department has issued a beach water advisory for South Beach at the Lighthouse, which extends from 9th Street to the Pier on St. Simons Island.

graphic showing the beach water advisory signs

The advisory is only for the area specified above and does not impact other beach areas on the island. There is no way of knowing if going into water that is under advisory will result in illness. However, beach water advisories are to alert the public of a possible risk of illness associated with water contact. An area under advisory does not mean the beach is closed.

Water samples are collected routinely on Georgia’s islands throughout the year. The samples are tested for enterococcus (pronounced: en·ter·o·coc·cus) bacteria which is found in warm blooded animals including humans but also birds, raccoons, deer, dolphins and other wildlife. It is difficult to determine exactly where the bacteria come from, but some sources could include animal waste, storm water runoff, or boating waste. When a beach is under advisory, it means that the level of bacteria found in the water is above the Environmental Protection Agency’s recommended standards.

The Health Department recommends you do not swim or wade in the water in the area under advisory. Fish and other seafood caught from this area should be thoroughly washed with fresh water and thoroughly cooked before eating, as should fish or seafood caught from any waters.

The area will be re-tested this week, and the advisory will be lifted when tests show the bacteria levels meet the Environmental Protection Agency’s recommended standards.

For more information, visit our Beach Water Testing Program page.

$100 Incentive Offered for COVID-19 Vaccination in Long County

The Coastal Health District and Long County Health Department will give Visa gift cards to the first 100 people who get vaccinated against COVID-19 on Thursday, September 30th at the health department. Vaccinations will be available from 8:30 – 11:30 a.m. and 1 – 5 p.m.

The Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) and Moderna vaccines will be available and are approved for people 18 and older. Appointments are required and can be scheduled at chdcovidvax.org by CHOOSING THE LONG COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT scheduling link for Moderna or Johnson and Johnson. Appointments can also be scheduled by calling 912-230-5506 Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Only 18% of Long County residents are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. “COVID is killing a lot of folks,” said Long County Sheriff, Craig Nobles. “There’s a lot of misinformation out there about the vaccine, but the truth is that it will help save people in my community and surrounding communities. We’re all in this together.”

Janssen is a one dose vaccine and Moderna requires two doses, four weeks apart. Anyone receiving a Janssen vaccine at the event will be given Visa gift cards valued at $100.  Anyone receiving the first dose of Moderna vaccine will receive a $50 gift card that day, and then another $50 gift card when they return for their second dose in four weeks.

Anyone with one previous Moderna vaccination who gets the second dose at the event will be eligible for a $50 Visa gift card; please bring your CDC vaccination card documenting your first dose. The giveaway is not retroactive and only applies to first and second doses.

PLEASE NOTE: THIS DOES NOT APPLY TO ANY OTHER COASTAL HEALTH DISTRICT COUNTY BESIDES LONG.