Thank you for everything you do to protect yourself and our residents from getting COVID-19. As many of you know, residents of long-term care communities are among those now being offered COVID-19 vaccines. Making sure residents receive COVID-19 vaccinations early will help save their lives. Because many residents have underlying health conditions and live in group settings, they are at higher risk of infection and severe illness from COVID-19. Our residents matter to us and getting vaccinated is an important step to prevent them from getting sick with COVID-19 disease.
To offer convenient access to the vaccine, we have partnered with CVS Pharmacy to provide on-site COVID-19 vaccinations for residents and staff free of charge. Please watch for additional information about on-site vaccination clinics in the coming weeks. When a resident agrees to get vaccinated, or persons appointed to make medical decisions agrees to have a resident vaccinated, it will be documented in the resident’s medical chart. We will work directly with to ensure residents receive a fact sheet before vaccination, explaining the risks and benefits of the COVID-19 vaccine. This is called an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) Fact Sheet. CVS Pharmacy may require written, email, or verbal consent from recipients before they are vaccinated. If the provider requires written consent, we will work with them to email consent forms to residents’ medical proxies in advance.
We understand you may have questions about the vaccine. Residents may have some side effects, which are normal signs that their bodies are building protection. The most common side effects are pain at the injection site, fever, and chills. These side effects tend to be mild to moderate and go away on their own within 1–2 days. We will work with residents and families to report any health problems that occur after vaccination to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), even if we are unsure if the vaccine caused the health problem. We call these types of health problems possible side effects or adverse events. Healthcare professionals are required by law to report certain adverse events after Covid-19 vaccine. In addition, we are encouraging residents who have a smartphone to enroll in enroll in v-safe, a tool that can be used to tell CDC if someone has any side effects after getting a COVID-19 vaccine.
COVID-19 vaccines are an important tool to help stop the pandemic. However, even after vaccination, everyone in the facility will continue following all the current guidance to protect themselves and others, including wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet away from others, following facility guidance on visitation and infection control, and cleaning hands often.
Thank you again for all you are doing to keep yourself and your family members safe. We will continue to update you on any new information about COVID-19 vaccination. Please contact your Cogir community for more information regarding dates and times of the CVS clinics at each of our 12 locations in Washington and Northern California.
President, Cogir Management USA