Situation Report | February 1, 2021
In a very promising development, HCA and the Governor’s office engaged in numerous substantive exchanges over the past week on home care and hospice experiences and overall status in the COVID-19 vaccination program.
HCA was able to draw upon compelling HCA member input and data provided to us on recent statewide member calls, meetings with our Board of Directors, member surveys and polls, and our day-to-day contacts from the field.
The Governor’s staff showed keen interest in learning about barriers encountered to home care worker vaccination and in our ideas for addressing them. We covered a wide range of issues: supply limits, confusing and conflicting vaccine registration locations, limits on locations where home care workers (and other Phase 1A priority workers) can present for vaccination, scheduling complexities and the need to avoid disruption of care, and other unique aspects of the vaccination rollout for home care and hospice.
The discussion also yielded an opportunity to further educate Executive staff about the uniqueness and vital roles of our field.
The timing is certainly critical with the potential advent of federal aid — and even more so as the Governor and his team will be evaluating funding and support priorities overall in negotiations of the new budget.
Home care and hospice have been too-often relegated to the “other” categories of the health system in state level decision-making, so discussions like this — directly focused on our sector’s needs and experiences — provide an opportunity to educate state leaders on the vital role of our field as well as further build upon HCA’s positioning of home care and hospice in the vaccine rollout.
HCA greatly appreciates this keen receptivity of the Governor’s staff and will continue to work these discussions toward improved methods for supporting home care and hospice in the COVID-19 crisis and beyond.