- Individuals are considered up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines during the surveillance period of September 26, 2022 – December 25, 2022 (Quarter 4) for the purpose of NHSN surveillance if they meet ONE the following criteria:
- Received their last booster dose less than 2 months ago, or
- Completed their primary series less than 2 months ago
- This definition is the same regardless of immunocompromised status
Skilled Nursing Facilities, intermediate care facilities (ICFs) and assisted living centers can access free COVID-19 testing for staff and residents through December 31, 2022. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Operation Expanded Testing (OpET) program expanded access to free testing nationwide to now include skilled nursing facilities, ICFs and assisted living communities, which previously targeted schools, shelters, and correctional facilities.
Even after three COVID-19 vaccine doses, high blood pressure more than doubles the risk for hospitalization with an omicron variant infection.
That’s according to a new study of 912 patients from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. The researchers analyzed healthsystem data for patients who became infected after receiving three shots. Of the participants, 145 — or nearly 16% — were hospitalized with COVID-19.
As cases of COVID-19 continue to rise throughout the country, it’s important that long term care facilities and communities encourage staff and residents to stay up to date on their vaccination status. The CDC defines up to date as having received all doses in the primary series and all boosters recommended, when eligible. Most recently, people over 50 are recommended to receive a second booster of either the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at least four months after their first booster.
The Occupational Health and Safety Agency (OSHA) announced a time-limited enforcement effort for focused inspections in hospitals, nursing facilities, and assisted living communities treating COVID-19 patients. The intent of this initiative is to magnify OSHA’s presence in health care facilities over a three-month period (March 9- June 9, 2022) to encourage employers in these industry sectors to take the necessary steps to protect their workers against the hazards of COVID-19.
Inspections will be limited to organizations with prior COVID-19-related citations or complaints. Inspections will focus on correction of prior citations and compliance with existing OSHA standards. More detailed information can be found on the OSHA website.
Today, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure issued a letter to health care facility administrators on the importance of COVID-19 staff vaccinations and the current CMS requirements. CMS recommends that facilities review the vaccine rule guidance released on December 28, 2021; January 14, 2022; and January 20, 2022 for additional information.
After a devastating storm, the signs of life—children going to school, lights coming on after days of power outages, neighbors talking and laughing—are powerful reminders of people’s resilience and the importance of their connections to each other. Even though the pandemic isn’t completely over, it has led to some changes, innovations, and inspiring stories that should be embraced and remembered moving forward.
One impact of COVID-19 has been a bit of a double-edged sword. The pandemic has shown a spotlight on nursing homes and other long term care facilities. While this has brought some negative and often unfair media coverage, it also presents opportunities.
As James Wright, MD, CMD, a multifacility medical director in Virginia, says, “For a brief period of time, the public was more interested than ever in what goes on in nursing homes, especially with staffing. If we take this interest and harness it into legislative and regulatory changes, we can translate this into better funding and staffing.”
Read more at https://bit.ly/3IUH1RY