According to a report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, just more than a third of nursing home workers have been getting COVID-19 vaccines when the shots are first offered, whilst the others have declined getting inoculated.
The CDC looked at more than 11,000 nursing homes and skilled nursing facilities that had at least one vaccination clinic between the middle of December and the middle of January. The researchers found that while 78% of residents got at least one shot, only 37.5% of staff members did.
The problem was discussed last week during a meeting of an expert panel that advises the CDC on vaccine policy. At the meeting, the CDC’s Dr. Amanda Cohn said more staffers get vaccinated when a second or third clinic is held at a home. “Continuing to capture those staff who did not accept vaccine early will be really important as we try to eliminate outbreaks and protect both staff and residents in long-term care facilities,” Cohn said.
Previous data also went on to show that people who work in nursing homes and long-term care facilities get flu vaccines at lower rates than other health-care workers. Surveys suggest that long-term care workers are skeptical the shots work and don’t think viruses spread easily from them to the people they care for.
The government has assigned CVS and Walgreens to administer the shots to long-term care homes in nearly every state, after which the chains plan three visits to each location. This being said, the chains have conveyed that the first doses of the vaccine have been successfully administered everywhere, barring those who refused to take the shots.
The CDC released a second report Monday that offered a larger national look at who has been getting the vaccine. The CDC study found that of the people who got at least one shot between mid-December and mid-January, 63% were women, and 55% were age 50 or older. It also found 60% were White, 11.5% Hispanic, 6% Asian, 5% Black, 2% American Indian/Alaska Native, and most of the others multiracial.