Drive for 75: Resources from Week 7

Regulation | April 16, 2021 | by Jill Schumann

LeadingAge Coronavirus Update Calls feature brief segments called “Drive for 75” to promote the successful vaccination of at least 75% of our aging services providers’ workforce, and as needed, residents, by June 30. We will cover developments in the news, research, and innovative practices that support our members in attaining high vaccination rates.

This Week’s Highlights:

Volume Eighteen: Air Date 4.12.21 “Questions About Vaccine Mandates”

Questions still pour in about whether employers can mandate the COVID-19 vaccine as a condition of employment. A recent Kaiser Family Foundation article addresses some of the key questions surrounding vaccine mandates.

It remains to be seen the extent to which states and/or employers might adopt COVID-19 vaccine mandates. Such mandates could certainly impact the distribution and uptake of vaccinations. This is likely to become more urgent as the need to vaccinate a large share of the U.S. population to reach herd immunity intensifies.

Key takeaways from the article include:

    • The federal gvernment’s authority to institute a vaccine mandate is unclear, though its authority to do so is doubtful.
    • A states’ pwer to mandate vaccines to protect public health is well-established from a prior Supreme Court case from 1905. Although all states require vaccines for children to attend school, states do not use mandates for adult vaccination (outside of flu vaccine mandates for some health care workers) and have thus far said they are not mandating COVID-19 vaccination.
    • Sme private employers require influenza vaccines for employees in health care settings, unless prohibited by state law, and some employers and universities have already instituted mandates for COVID-19 vaccination for employees and/or students. Some state have also explored prohibiting the ability of employers to mandate COVID-19 vaccines.
    • Curts have not yet ruled whether COVID-19 vaccines can be mandated while operating under an Emergency Use Authorization.
    • Under federal and state law any vaccine mandates are subject t exemptions based on disability or religious objections.

We will continue to monitor any vaccine applications to the FDA for full approval as well as changes in state or federal government or employer policies on mandates.

Volume Nineteen: Air Date 4.15.21 “Each One Reach One”

Each one reach one, each one teach one is said to be a proverb that related to slavery in the United States when slaves were forbidden to learn to read or attend school. Each one reach one relied on an informal approach in which each person taught what they knew to someone else, while they were learning themselves. In this way, many slaves learned math and reading one-on-one. Some experts are suggesting this might be a good way to get more people vaccinated. Most of us know at least one person who is either uncertain about taking the COVID vaccine or has decided against it. If each of us reached out in a non-judgmental way to listen carefully to a person’s thoughts and feelings about the vaccine, we might be able to provide useful information or another perspective.

Hesitancy about this vaccine isn’t just a cognitive problem. It is also an affective problem. How people feel about the vaccine and this process matters, too. The most important learning so far is that it is critically important to meet someone where they are – not where we think they should be. There are no magic words or universal phrases, but one-on-one conversation may be an answer.