December 18, 2020
Dear Resident or Responsible Party:
This has been a very difficult year with the COVID-19 pandemic, but I am pleased to share some good news. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has found a COVID-19 vaccine to be safe and effective, and our facility will be able to give the vaccine to residents. This is very encouraging news.
We will begin giving the vaccine to residents on January 6, 2021 and January 27, 2021. The vaccine will be stored and administered by Omnicare, a part of CVS, which is our current contracted pharmacy. We need your consent for the pharmacy to administer the vaccine to your loved one. Completed consent forms must be received prior to the vaccine administration. A consent form is included with this mailing or you can download the consent form from the site listed below. We must have three signed copies of the consent form-one for the pharmacy, one for the medical record, and one for your records. There will be no costs to get the vaccine.
We encourage as many residents as possible to get this vaccine. The elderly have a much higher risk for getting very sick, being hospitalized, or dying from COVID-19. The vaccine has been shown to provide a great deal of protection against serious illness due to COVID-19. The more residents that get vaccinated, the better we can protect our community against potential outbreaks and save lives.
This vaccine has gone through testing and clinical trials to ensure it meets the highest safety standards. It also is safe to get if you already had the virus. The health and safety of our residents is always our top priority, and we are confident this vaccine is a much better option than the risk of getting this virus.
Please read the included fact sheet and contact Katie Curfiss, Administrator or Sharon Leftwich, Director of Nursing with any questions. Potential side effects are listed on the fact sheet. You will find that these side effects are similar to the potential side effects of the flu shot, but they occur more frequently. The vaccine requires two doses. Residents will need to get both doses to ensure the best results. The second dose will be given approximately 21 to 28 days after the first dose.
We will continue to take all necessary precautions after the vaccine is administered, including wearing personal protective equipment and conducting regular testing, to ensure the safety of our residents and staff. We will also work with public health officials to determine how and when to adjust our policies for visitations and social activities and keep you updated.
There is a light at the end of the tunnel. We are hopeful that the vaccine will be a lifesaving turning point in the fight against COVID-19. Please do not hesitate to reach out to us with any questions. You may also visit www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines to learn more about the vaccine.