This past week, HCA continued to be in communication with representatives of the Governor’s office, the state Department of Health (DOH), New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and regional vaccination hubs across the state about the lack of vaccines for home care workers.
HCA has participated in meetings to plan for wider availability of vaccines when they become available and has urged that home care workers and their patients be included in such efforts.
HCA also worked with one hospital in New York City to arrange vaccines for a limited number of home care agencies and hopes to expand such efforts as more vaccinations are obtained.
Meanwhile, The Governor released a list of comorbidities and underlying conditions that New York State will use to determine eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine. New Yorkers who have one of the comorbidities on the list will be eligible for the vaccine beginning February 15.
While individuals with these conditions need to be vaccinated, this eligibility expansion, along with other recently announced groups (i.e., restaurant workers), will result in even more scarcity of available vaccine supply and appointments for home care workers who remain prioritized under eligibility group 1A.
In addition, DOH has posted a consolidated reference document which includes hyperlinks to important DOH-issued guidance relating to the COVID-19 pandemic response. Additional COVID-19 resources for providers can be found on the DOH Information for Healthcare Providers webpage.