Photo: Home-based staff at Infinity Hospice Care are able to get the COVID vaccine
to protect themselves, those they care for, and the community.
Hospice and community-based palliative care providers should be high priority for vaccine access
As the oldest and largest leadership association working to advance person-centered care in the United States, the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) calls on all hospice and community-based palliative care providers, and those they serve, to avail themselves of the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as they have access.
“Hospice and palliative care professionals are on the frontlines of health care delivery in this country. Not only are they serving the most vulnerable population with complex medical needs, but they are caring for people in their homes, interacting with family caregivers, and traveling throughout the communities they serve,” said NHPCO President and CEO Edo Banach. “For their own protection, the safety of those under their care, and the welfare of their families and communities, NHPCO encourages these dedicated professionals to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.”
“As soon as I am able, I plan to get the vaccine myself,” Banach added.
On December 11, 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued the first emergency use authorization for a vaccine for the prevention of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in individuals 16 years of age and older. The emergency use authorization allows the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to be distributed in the U.S. Additionally, a vaccine from Moderna is being reviewed by the FDA and is expected to be approved shortly.
NHPCO believes that appropriate research and study has been done to ensure safety and confidence, and vaccines, once approved by the FDA, do not pose a significant threat.
Benefits of getting vaccinated for Coronavirus include:
- Decrease the likelihood of being infected with COVID-19.
- Reduce the severity of the illness if you were to contract COVID-19.
- Protect people that you interact with.
It should be noted that NHPCO encourages all individuals continue with safety precautions such as: wearing a mask, social distancing, proper hand hygiene, avoiding unnecessary travel, avoiding non-essential indoor gatherings, and quarantining as necessary.
NHPCO offers information and resources to help providers address the COVID-19 pandemic on its website, www.nhpco.org/coronavirus.