Guidance from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services on the federal COVID-19 vaccine mandate for all healthcare workers can’t come soon enough for those in nursing homes, according to one industry expert. 

The agency on Monday confirmed that details on what will be required with the impending mandate will be released soon, with officials anticipating the agency will issue a regulation covering multiple industries in mid- to late-October. 

Despite being just days or weeks away, geriatrician Michael Wasserman warned that “every day that goes by without guidance will inevitably lead to more deaths.”

The average COVID-19 vaccination rate among nursing homes is currently at 67.1%, according to the latest federal data. The mandate could provide a big boost to that figure. New York, which implemented its vaccine mandate on Sept. 27, has a current vaccination rate of 97% for long-term care staff. 

“We cannot implement this soon enough,” Wasserman told ABC News this week. 

“The federal mandate was welcomed, but the lack of guidance is concerning,” he said. “Having unvaccinated staff caring for residents will result in the transmission of the virus and therefore deaths.”