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Maryland consolidates COVID websites as national emergency sunsets

An artist's rendering of the original SARS-CoV-2 virus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic.
An artist's rendering of the original SARS-CoV-2 virus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic. (CDC)

As the nation’s response to COVID-19 is changing, the Maryland Department of Health is consolidating its online resources into one page that holds treatment, vaccine, data and other information.

MDH announced Thursday that it will discontinue its COVIDlink and coronavirus.maryland.gov websites and bring the two services into one URL: health.maryland.gov/COVID.

The change is happening as the federal government is ending its national emergency on COVID-19.

The consolidated website will still offer many of the same services as the previous sites, however there will be some changes.

Maryland will now use a federal locator system for identifying testing and vaccination centers.

The state will also end its COVIDAlert system on May 9. That system allowed people to anonymously report COVID exposures so people who were in their vicinity would be alerted.

MDH said it will continue to tell people when there are institutional COVID outbreaks and other public health situations.

“These changes reflect the new phase of COVID-19 that we are in today,” said MDH Secretary Laura Herrera Scott. “We will continue to actively monitor trends related to COVID-19 and offer robust information about COVID-19 on our new webpages.”

The national emergency on COVID will end May 11. Maryland and some of its local jurisdictions are picking up the slack in benefits the federal government will no longer offer.

Baltimore City officials said they will use $80 million in federal grant money from the American Rescue Plan Act to continue free testing and vaccines.

Scott is the Health Reporter for WYPR. @smaucionewypr
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