Snell Isle Alerts

What Women Need to Know about Mammograms & Covid Vaccine

Women should pay attention to the timing of their COVID-19 vaccination shots and breast exams, according to new guidelines.

If it does not delay care, women should consider scheduling their mammogram either before receiving the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, or four to six weeks following the second dose of a vaccine, according to guidance released Thursday by the nonprofit organization, Society of Breast Imaging.

The new guidelines were issued after reports of both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines causing swollen lymph nodes in the armpit area where the shot was administered.

That area of the body is also where enlarged lymph nodes can be a sign of breast cancer, according to Dr. Jennifer Ashton, ABC News chief medical correspondent.

"What they're seeing in real time is enlarged lymph nodes in women who have had the COVID-19 vaccine and they don't want that to produce confusion with results of their mammogram," Ashton, a board-certified OBGYN, said of the SBI's new guidelines. "But the most important thing is to realize that just seeing an enlarged lymph node in an armpit without a breast finding is not necessarily a sign of breast cancer."

Swollen lymph nodes after the second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine is not a cause for concern, according to Ashton.

"This is just your immune system doing its thing," she said. "This is your body doing its job.” Ashton advised people to talk to their doctor and radiologist and also make sure they know in which arm you were vaccinated.

Women age 45 to 54 should get mammograms every year, according to the American Cancer Society. Women ages 40 to 44 should "have the choice" to start annual breast cancer screening with mammograms if they wish. Women 55 and older may switch to mammograms every two years or continue yearly screening, according to ACS

Updated Covid Vaccine Info

Once again, the process is changing for Covid vaccine appointments for those over 65 in Pinellas County that have pre-registered on the www.PatientPortalFL.com website. For those pre-registered, you need to await either a text or an email from the Health Department (Pinellas County Government) to let you know they are ready for you to make an appointment online. (There will no longer be the mad dash to sign in to the website at a pre-determined time as it caused more angst and frustration than it helped.) Additional details about this process are below (starting with the blue Pinellas County logo).

So in Pinellas County now, you have multiple ways to attempt to obtain an appointment for your Covid vaccine besides the pre-registration above. They are:

Publix Pharmacies https://www.publix.com/covid-vaccine/florida

Walmart http://www.walmart.com/COVIDvaccine

Sam’s Club http://www.samsclub.com/covid

Hopefully with these multiple avenues to obtain an appointment for the vaccine, more and more folks are able to get those coveted appointments!

Pinellas County Government Public Information

Improved process announced for vaccine scheduling. • Residents 65 and older who have pre-registered through CDR Health Pro Patient Portal will receive a text and/or email as vaccine appointments become available. There will be no more open calls. • Residents will need to book appointments for both doses within 48 hours of the notification. • Only enough people to cover for the available vaccine supply will be contacted.

Pinellas County officials announced an improved process for individuals 65+ to book their COVID-19 vaccine appointments. The process will no longer involve open calls to all users, but rather direct notifications to smaller groups of users based on the number of available doses.

For residents who have pre-registered:

Residents 65 and older who have created accounts through the CDR Health Pro Patient Portal (www.PatientPortalFL.com) should frequently monitor their text messages and/or emails, whichever they provided in the CDR Health portal, for a direct notification. The notification will include instructions for scheduling their vaccination as new appointments become available in the coming weeks. For now, people will be contacted in the order in which they signed up.

The process is summarized below: - Monitor for a direct notification from CDR Health. Only one notification will be provided. Reminders will not be sent.

- Log in, enter the requested information and book first and second dose appointments. Users will have 48 hours to complete the booking. - Keep the appointment. Due to limited supply and high demand, rescheduling is not available. Prioritize accordingly. There are approximately 60,000 residents pre-registered in the system who have not yet scheduled an appointment.

For residents who have not yet pre-registered:

Residents 65+ should pre-register on the website (www.PatientPortalFL.com) or call 844-770-8548 to create an account or get help. When registering, opt in to both email and text alerts when possible. Individuals without immediate computer or cell phone access are encouraged to have a friend or family member pre-register them and monitor for the notification.

To date, more than 94,000 people have received at least their first dose of the vaccine in Pinellas County, around 9.5 percent of the county’s population. For more information on local vaccine distribution and availability updates, visit https://covid19.pinellascounty.org/vaccines

Updated Covid Vaccine Info

There is a patchwork of systems in place throughout Florida’s 67 counties for getting registered and then receiving appointments to get the Covid vaccine. It is very confusing, to say the least. To try and simplify for us in Pinellas…

Pinellas County residents who only want to go to a location in Pinellas County to receive your vaccine, make sure you are registered at http://PatientPortalFL.com When Pinellas County announces new vaccines are available at https://Covid19.PinellasCounty.org/vaccines/ they will include the date and time the above site opens for appointments. When vying for appointments, you select the location in Pinellas County where you’d like to be vaccinated as there are several locations. As you know, lots of people are vying for appointments so you have to be quick!

For Pinellas residents willing to drive to another county to receive the vaccine the State has a number of counties that opted to go into their Statewide system MyVaccine.FL.gov which was just announced last week (those counties in the Tampa Bay area that are participating in the Statewide system are Citrus, Hardee, Highlands and Hillsborough). When you register at MyVaccine.FL.gov, your place in line will be reserved. Your registration at that site asks HOW you would like to be notified when a vaccine is available for you (phone, text or email). Since at this point Pinellas County has opted out of the State’s system, as a Pinellas resident, you could register and select Hillsborough (or Citrus, Hardee, Highlands) as the county you’d like to drive to in order to receive the vaccine. Selecting Pinellas at this point on this site gets you nowhere since Pinellas has opted OUT of the State’s system for now. Just as a matter of information, in the Tampa Bay area, these counties are NOT part of the Statewide system at this time: Hernando, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, and Sarasota.

As with everything to do with this Florida vaccination process, this information is accurate today but could change at any point.

COVID VACCINE

For Pinellas residents >65 attempting to get the Covid vaccine, it can be more than frustrating. On January 23rd, 8000 vaccine appointments were made available and, within minutes, the site crashed and all appointments had been booked. With 250K Pinellas residents over age 65, it’s no wonder! Here’s some options for you to consider…

1. Please check with your Primary Care Physician to see if they either HAVE the vaccine or have been told they will be getting it. They may also be of assist to you in getting an appointment through a local hospital.

2. For folks who are willing to drive somewhat of a distance, I offer the first two websites below that you might consider. Nothing is assured, it’s just additional resources that you might try - knowing it involves a drive. As for Publix Pharmacies, it seems the counties that are offering vaccines are the counties with fewer hospitals. We can hope that Pinellas' Publix Pharmacies might be added soon but not likely until vaccine availability is more prevalent. If you are willing to drive, go to this site EARLY, like 6AM, to sign up for an appointment. These appointments book quickly!

3. The next site is our local Bayfront Hospital.

4. The last site is the State’s CDR HealthPro website that booked 10K appointments last week and 8K appointments this morning for Pinellas County.

I hope you will bookmark each of these 3 websites (the bottom 3 below) to check in often to see if they have available vaccines. There could be other websites I am not listing but I’m providing you what I know. Please continue to wear your mask, keep your distance and wash your hands often. Even after you get the vaccine, we’re not out of the woods yet, we’ll still need to keep those masks on when around others.

COVID-19 Vaccine Information, Hillsborough County Updated: 01/20/2021 Hillsborough County is partnering with the State of Florida in operating a drive-thru vaccination site at University Mall, 2200 E. Fowler Ave., Tampa, FL 33612 for seniors age 65 and older and front-line health care workers.

Appointments are mandatory. No walk-ups will be accepted. To request an appointment please call 1-866-200-3896 or TTY 1-833-476-1029.

While Hillsborough County currently does not have access to the number of vaccines being distributed by hospitals and private health care systems, additional vaccination efforts are underway in this community. Qualified individuals under Phase I of the governor of Florida's vaccination distribution plan are also encouraged to check with their health care provider as they may be able to provide a vaccine.

AdventHealth | BayCare | Suncoast Community Health | Tampa General | USF Health

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Publix Vaccine Information https://www.publix.com/covid-vaccine/florida

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https://www.bayfrontstpete.com/covid19vaccine

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https://www.patientportalfl.com/s/

If you’ve not registered on this site, do so now. That will save you time when you are vying for an appointment when more vaccines become available.

Food Truck Wednesday - TODAY 5pm - 8pm

It’s Food Truck Wednesday at Northeast Church on Shore Acres this Wednesday (4/20) from 5 - 8 PM! Take a break from cooking and get some great American food from the Slammer Shop food truck and finish it off with an amazing dessert from the Funnel Vision truck.

We’re also collecting non-perishable food donations for the St. Pete Free Clinic. So please bring a food item to help those in need during this challenging time. Those who make a donation will get a free drink from the truck!

There’s plenty of room in the church parking lot to get your food and maintain social distancing. Stop by 4400 Shore Acres Blvd, 33703 on Wednesday and don’t forget your food donation.

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About Snell Isle

image Snell Isle is home to the historic The Vinoy® Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort & Golf Club, one of the Nation's premier golf courses.
image Our tropical surroundings provide waterfront vistas for most residents. Over 80% of the homes on Snell Isle enjoy waterfront views.
image In 1920, local developer C. Perry Snell began construction on what was originally, a muddy mangrove island.

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