The Biden administration recently announced that it will require nursing home staff to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to continue receiving Medicare and Medicaid funding.
The announcement comes as the highly contagious Delta variant is causing an alarming increase in COVID-19 cases. According to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the Delta variant has spurred a jump in daily new cases in the US from a low of 319 on June 27 to nearly 2,700 on August 8.
“I’m using the power of the federal government as a payer of healthcare costs to ensure we reduce those risks for our most vulnerable seniors. These steps are all about keeping people safe and out of harm’s way,” President Biden said in a recent press conference from the White House. “Now if you visit, live or work in a nursing home you should not be at a high risk of contracting COVID from unvaccinated employees.”
More than 130,000 nursing home residents have died from COVID, he added, stating that a study has shown that a “highly vaccinated nursing home staff” is associated with “at least 30 percent less COVID cases among long-term care residents.”
There is work to be done. Of the 1.5-million nursing home staff in the United States, some 540,000 — or 40 percent of the workforce — are still unvaccinated.
In the seven states where less than half of nursing home staff are vaccinated, weekly cases were 7.9 times higher in the week ending August 1 than in the week ending June 27. In states that have vaccinated more staff than average (upwards of 60 percent), cases reported in the week ending August 1 were only 3 times higher than cases reported in the last week of June.
How nursing homes can ensure compliance
With funding now tied directly to staff vaccine rates, nursing homes will require a solution that will enable them to expedite vaccine provision and easily track staff vaccine status. eForms simplifies the process by allowing homes to quickly capture and store information in one secure digital location — all without the need for time-consuming paper forms.
The COVID-19 vaccine digital form is pre-populated with standard screening questions, consent and vaccine status fields, capturing all critical data nursing homes require to show compliance in one convenient place. Forms can be sent to staff digitally for remote signature capture and stored in one secure digital location for quick review with relevant parties, further strengthening compliance while reducing costs.
COVID-19 vaccine consent forms can be implemented alone or alongside commonly used intake and documentation forms to further streamline efficiencies across the board. eForms integrates with many of the leading EHR systems, including MatrixCare and PointClickCare.
Retain critical funding by implementing a quick and easy solution to capture and store staff vaccine compliance — discover how eForms can work for you. Schedule your demo today to learn more.