(Alexandria, Va.) – In the spirit of continuing to prioritize the health and safety of senior living residents, staff, and visitors, Argentum released a statement today supporting employer mandates of COVID-19 vaccinations for the senior living workforce:
Senior living communities have been on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic for over a year and a half, serving some of the country’s most vulnerable populations—our nation’s seniors and the associates who care for them. Due in large part to the release of COVID-19 vaccines and the commitment of so many residents and staff across the industry who have been vaccinated, there has been a significant decline in reported incidences of COVID-19 among senior living communities.
However, COVID-19 variants including the Delta variant, are continuing to spread and rates are increasing throughout the country. This once again puts senior living communities, their residents, and team members at higher risk.
As a result, Argentum supports employers throughout the industry mandating vaccinations for their senior living workforce. Vaccination continues to be the best way to mitigate the continued spread and impact of COVID-19 to keep residents and staff healthy.
With this decision, Argentum is also following the lead of many senior living providers—as of early August, at least 40 senior living employers are already mandating vaccinations for all staff, which translates to 1 in 4 senior living employees currently being covered under an employee mandate. Increasing staff vaccinations will continue to be the most important driver in ensuring the well-being of residents and staff across the industry.
During the pandemic, the senior living industry has led the way in educating residents and staff on the importance of being vaccinated and the data show these efforts are effective. According to a survey conducted by Argentum in July, resident vaccination rates continue to remain high at over 90% and staff vaccination rates continue to improve with more than 7 out of 10 workers being vaccinated against COVID-19. In fact, COVID-19 vaccination rates within senior living communities are higher than 99% of all U.S. counties and more than double nearly 2/3 of counties.
Employer mandates will continue to improve vaccination uptake among senior living employees, resulting in safer environments for all who rely on the senior living industry.
Employers are encouraged to account for state and local laws and regulations when implementing mandates, and to offer exemptions consistent with medical objections and accommodations consistent with EEOC guidelines.