Is it time to punish nursing homes that allow caregivers to put residents at unsafe risk by refusing vaccinations? Is caregiver choice more important than unsafe risks? The risk is unnecessary. The vaccine is safe. Employment is not a right. The safety of the residents must come first. Take the choice away from the employees.
A recent Washington Post suggested that regulatory powers allow the withholding of funds if they are placing residents at risk. Only 61% of caregivers are vaccinated.
The industry argues that enforcement should apply to all healthcare providers, and not just long-term care. The Department of Veterans Affairs announced a mandate for frontline healthcare workers to get vaccinated or face possible termination of employment. Many chains like Genesis Healthcare, Good Samaritan and Brookdale Senior Living require vaccinations for their employees. they admit it is necessary to prevent a repeat of last year’s deadly surge.
Increasing vaccination rates among staff play a crucial role in trying to limit the likelihood of an outbreak. You can look up on the CDC’s website how many workers have been vaccinated. Here’s a link to the data: https://data.cms.gov/covid-19/covid-19-nursing-home-data.
Please be safe. Your choice creates unnecessary and unsafe risks for all of us. We are in this together. Be careful.