June 3, 2021

The Best Way to Honor Your Father and Mother? Getting a COVID-19 Vaccination.

While it appears that there may be some light at the end of this long and winding COVID-19 tunnel, we are not out of the woods just yet.

It is disheartening that breakthrough cases of COVID-19 are once again on the rise in long-term-care facilities. Because of our residents’ susceptibility and vulnerability to infectious diseases due to factors like pre-existing conditions, semi-private living quarters and group dining, we have to exercise extreme caution across the board to prevent infection—even one new coronavirus case could mean quarantine measures for the entire facility. 

To date, 98 percent of our residents and 93 percent of our staff members have received vaccinations; both numbers are well over national averages for healthcare workers and residents in long-term-care facilities. We hope to serve as a strong example for similar facilities, and are also extremely proud of our residents and staff for taking the necessary steps to keep themselves and those around them healthy.

Now that the vaccine is widely available, it’s paramount for the health of our communities that people continue to get vaccinated—not only for their own safety, but to pay heed to the social responsibility we have to protect one another.

Medical experts claim that the risks of contracting COVID-19 will not lessen until we, as a community and as a nation, reach what is known as “herd immunity,” which means indirect protection from a disease through immunity. In the case of COVID-19, the quickest and safest way to achieve this is through vaccination.

Now there are some people who are vaccine hesitant. Most resistance is due to misinformation; many believe that if they are young and healthy, they don’t need to worry about getting COVID-19. But the reality is that even if your body has the ability to fight the disease, you still run the risk of transmitting the virus to others.

Others who have not been vaccinated believe that some people need the vaccine more than they do. At this point, millions of Americans have been vaccinated, and everyone who’s high-risk has had an opportunity to get the vaccine. And though scheduling may have been an issue in the past, there are now significantly more vaccines available and at many more accessible locations—all at no cost. It’s also critical that people not stop at a single shot (if they’ve received a mRNA vaccine); the most effective vaccination treatment requires two doses–ideally between three and four weeks apart.

Given the overwhelming benefits of vaccination, I urge you, whether you’re a family member, friend or community member, to get vaccinated as soon as possible—for the protection of our residents, staff, everyone you interact with and yourself. We have a responsibility and civic duty to do everything we can to protect one another and I am extremely grateful to be part of a community that, without reservation, always acts in the service of others.

Jeff Cohen, Kline Galland CEO

Categories: From the CEO