x
Breaking News
More () »

Vaccine mandate could make nursing home staff shortage worse

"Long term care communities are largely reliant on Medicare and Medicaid funding to cover the cost of caring for vulnerable seniors."

MIDLAND, Texas — President Biden's new plan requires vaccinations for over 17 million healthcare workers that have some involvement with Medicare and Medicaid.

That includes nursing homes. Some facilities worry that the vaccine mandate will drive away employees.

"We still remain very concerned about the vaccine mandate and in particular the staffing challenges that already exist," said Kevin Warren, the President and CEO of the Texas Health Care Association.

Last month, President Biden announced that nursing home employees must get vaccinated if they want to continue to receive funding.

In a statement from Focused Care, a local care facility, they noted "Long term care providers have been justifiably concerned that singling out nursing home staff for required vaccinations could exacerbate an already untenable workforce shortage should those who choose not to be vaccinated leave skilled nursing care for other health care settings."

When it comes to the new mandate for a wider range of health care workers, those working for long-term facilities believe mandates still might not be the answer. 

"Focused Care encourages the administration to add mandatory testing as an option to this regulation to provide another choice to those who oppose vaccination," stated Focused Care.

There is no official word on when these mandates will go into effect, but the White House will likely get out that message out soon.

"It will be really interesting to see what impact this mandate ultimately has on the greater collective spread of folks getting vaccinated, its just hard to tell at this point," said Warren.