Chicago’s Long-Term Care Residents and Healthcare Workers in Line To Receive First Round of COVID-19 Vaccines
An emergency meeting led by the immunization advisory panel for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Tuesday, December 1, 2020, confirmed that long-term care residents and healthcare workers would be the first to access the long-awaited COVID-19 vaccine. Once authorized by the federal government, an estimated 3 million residents and 21 million healthcare workers at long-term care facilities, including skilled nursing, assisted living, and other residential care facilities, will be eligible. The CDC is expected to provide further guidelines on how to distribute amongst the groups.
McKnight’s Long-Term Care News is reporting the groups will be treated as so:
- For long-term care facilities, those rankings would encourage state officials to consider prioritizing skilled nursing facilities to receive vaccine doses first, then to residents at assisted living facilities, residential care communities, intermediate care facilities, and state veterans homes.
- For healthcare personnel, considerations called for workers with direct patient contact for top prioritization, followed by workers in long-term care facilities and employees without any known COVID-19 infection during the last 90 days.
The medication will be provided to long-term care facilities at no cost. So far, out of the nation’s 15,000 plus nursing homes, an estimated 99% have signed up to participate in the program. The two expected vaccines, provided by Pfizer and Moderna, are showing more than 95% efficacy in promising testing stages. State and local health officials in Illinois expect to distribute the medication to these groups by the end of 2020.
Illinois’ Vaccine Distribution Plan for Nursing Home Workers and Residents
As of December 8, 2020, the Illinois Department of Public Health reports a total of 804,174 cases of coronavirus, including 13,487 deaths, in 102 counties in Illinois. More than 50,000 cases and 6,500 deaths involve the state’s long-term care network.
Shortly after the announcement, Chicago’s NPR channel WBEZ reported, “The state’s vaccine distribution draft plan defines the first priority group as critical workforce members who provide health care. The next group includes staff and residents in long-term care facilities, and the third is critical workforce members who provide essential functions of society. Chicago’s distribution plan is the same, though it also includes anyone over the age of 65.”
Under current authorization and vaccine protocols, healthcare workers are not required to be vaccinated but are expected to follow infectious disease guidelines.
Chicago Nursing Home Attorneys for Infectious Disease-Related Injuries
The team at Levin & Perconti is working tirelessly to advocate for nursing home residents during this time. We invite you to use our resources to protect your loved ones. But if you suspect mistreatment of a nursing home resident as the cause of their illness or untimely death, please contact Levin & Perconti. We take extreme pride in being one of the nation’s most recognized and respected leaders in the areas of elder abuse and nursing home negligence litigation.
Please, contact us now for a FREE and confidential consultation at 312-332-2872 in Chicago, or reach us toll-free at 1-877-374-1417.