Since the spring of 2020, the Priority Life Care corporate team, along with community co-workers, have worked persistently to protect our residents and each other from COVID-19. And finally, the COVID-19 vaccine has become available which will enable our communities to accelerate our return to “normal.”
As part of the country’s roll-out, Priority Life Care staff and residents will be among the first in the country to have access to the COVID-19 vaccine. Educating residents and coworkers is already in progress. The vaccine clinics are being planned as we speak. Priority Life Care has registered its communities with the state and pharmacies to be ready as soon as it is available to us.
“We are very grateful to be prioritized for the vaccine,” says Severine Petras-Wells, CEO of Priority Life Care. “Given the demographics of senior living, we can feel more comfortable with group dining, group activities and family visitations when residents and staff are vaccinated.”
Even with the vaccine, Priority Life Care will continue with safety measures which will include the use of personal protective equipment, testing as directed by local health authorities, and enhanced cleaning protocols.
“We look forward to being one of the safest places an older adult can live. We persevered through this pandemic and will continue to stand STRONG,” says Petras.
What is Priority Life Care’s plan for distribution?
We have already been in communication with our pharmacy partners regarding the plans for the distribution of the Covid-19 vaccine to our communities. We are working with state health authorities and the pharmacy partner(s) to work through the logistics of storage and distribution of the vaccine. We are in the beginning stages of this work and the procedures vary from state to state.
In efforts to be prepared to begin vaccinations as quickly as possible, we will soon be reaching out to staff, residents, and primary contacts to get all necessary paperwork completed for authorization of vaccination.
We are beginning a campaign around education immediately.
When will a COVID-19 vaccine be widely available to the public?
The CDC says that while limited COVID-19 vaccine doses may be available in 2020, it’s anticipated that the vaccine supply will increase substantially in 2021. So, 2021 is when most people will be able to get a COVID-19 vaccine.
What are the side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine?
Most people do not have serious problems after being vaccinated, according to the CDC. We will understand more about the mild side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine before we start to use it. Note that your arm may be sore, red, or warm to the touch. These symptoms usually go away on their own. Some people report getting a headache or fever when getting a vaccine. These side effects are a sign that your immune system is doing exactly what it is supposed to do. It’s working and building up protection against disease.
Is it true you need two doses of the vaccine?
Yes. Nearly all COVID-19 vaccines being studied in the U.S. require two shots. The first one starts building protection, but everyone will have to have a second one a few weeks later to get the most protection the vaccine can offer.
Isn’t it better to get immunity from actually having COVID-19 than it is to get immunity from a vaccine?
No. The CDC says getting the COVID-19 vaccine is the safer choice. While scientists are still learning more about the virus, the current advice is that COVID-19 has caused serious illness and death for many, many people and if you get it, you also risk giving it to your loved ones, who may get very sick.
Can individuals pay to be one of the first to get the COVID-19 vaccine?
No. Vaccines will be administered according to the federal government’s carefully planned priority list, which Priority Life Care is thrilled to be a part of.
Why aren’t hand-washing and social distancing enough to prevent the spread of COVID-19?
We need to use many different methods to stop a pandemic. The CDC points out that vaccines work with your immune system so your body will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed. But washing hands and using hand sanitizer, maintaining social distance, and wearing face masks help reduce your chances of being exposed or of spreading the virus to others.
For additional FAQs, including the vaccine ingredients, visit the FDA website here.
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