COVID VACCINE INFORMATION
December 13, 2020
Dear Family Member/Designated Representative,
As the holiday season and the new year approaches, we are pleased to inform you of some developments that we are anticipating in the upcoming weeks. We know how difficult this period has been for the residents, family members, and the community at large. We thank you for entrusting us to care for your loved one and for your ongoing support and understanding.
As you may be aware, various pharmaceutical companies have been working with the FDA to grant an emergency use authorization for COVID-19 vaccinations. Through a partnership of several Federal and State programs, the vaccination has been approved, and nursing home residents and staff were earmarked for the first phase of vaccine distribution.
The NYS Department of Health is overseeing the implementation of this program through a contract with Walgreens and CVS pharmacies. The facility is expecting that we will have the vaccinations within the next few days. The first distribution date is anticipated to be December 21'1. We expect that we will be receiving the Pfizer vaccine which requires a two-dose administration, approximately 21 days apart. The vaccination will not give a person COVID-19. The first shot primes the immune system to recognize the virus, and the second shot strengthens the immune response.
We will be following all the recommendations from the CDC, FDA and the NYS Department of Health as we prepare for and administer immunizations to the residents. Enclosed please find a copy of Fact Sheet: Understanding the COVID-19 Vaccine which was compiled by leading experts in the field.
As in all vaccinations, the medical and nursing staff will be monitoring the residents for any signs and symptoms of adverse effects and any concerns will be immediately addressed. For a day or two after the vaccination, the resident may experience short-term discomfort: fatigue, headache, muscle pain, chills, fever and pain at the injection site after vaccination. These are normal reactions.
Even after the vaccine program begins, the facility will remain vigilant in taking the same proactive measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The staff will continue to wear appropriate protective equipment and the facility will continue with the enhanced cleaning and disinfection processes.
We would like to take this opportunity to wish you a joyous and healthy holiday season and look forward to a brighter 2021. If you have any further questions please contact us at 914-963-4000 Ext. 102
Director of Nursing