Long-term care provider advocates are intensifying pressure — on distributors and their own staff members — to conduct more expansive COVID-19 vaccinations in the week ahead.
Federal officials and retail partners CVS and Walgreens have forecast that 95% of long-term care facilities should have at least their first wave of shots completed by Jan. 25, but that target date has been questioned. It is not known what Friday’s announcement of a lack of reserve vaccine doses in the purported national stockpile will mean for long-term care operators moving forward.
While residents who have been given a chance to be vaccinated have accepted at about a 95% rate, nursing home staffs have struggled to get near 50% compliance, often much lower, various sources have reported. While many employees harbor suspicions about the safety of the quickly developed vaccines, or vaccinations in general, there also have been challenges getting prepped materials dispersed to thousands of waiting facilities nationwide.
Health officials greatly expanded the pool of eligible vaccine recipients this week by announcing that anyone 65 or older is now able to get vaccinated.