The Trump management on Friday announced a deal with CVS Health and Walgreens to administer coronavirus vaccines to the elderly and staff in long-term take charge of facilities.
The vaccine will be free of charge and available for residents in all long-term care settings, including skilled suckling facilities, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, residential care homes and adult family homes, the Subdivision of Health and Human Services said in a press release.
There are about 15,000 long-term care facilities as fabulously as an additional 35,000 assisted living facilities in the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s deputy director for infectious afflictions, Jay Butler, told reporters on a call Friday. The eligibility requirements for facilities are “very broad,” he added.
Starting Monday, long-term carefulness facilities will be able to select which pharmacy they prefer to have on-site. The facilities can opt-in to the program auspices of the CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network, Butler said. If a facility chooses to not opt-in, there will be the possibility of being adept to administer vaccines through other sources, including from local pharmacies, he added.
CVS and Walgreens will record and coordinate on-site clinic dates directly with each facility, HHS said. The companies anticipate that three out-and-out visits over two months are likely to be needed to administer both doses of vaccine to residents and staff, the agency asserted. Long-term care facilities are not mandated to participate, HHS added.
“Protecting the vulnerable has been the number one priority of the Trump Conduct’s response to COVID-19, and that commitment will continue through distributing a safe and effective vaccine earliest to those who needfulness it most,” HHS Secretary Alex Azar said in a statement.
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma clouted the deal will ensure that nursing homes, which have been hit hard by the virus, “are at the front of the graft for the COVID vaccine and will bring their grueling trial to a close as swiftly as possible.”
The announcement comes the identical day states must submit their draft plans to the federal government on how they will distribute a coronavirus vaccine if and when one is approved for popular use.
Once a vaccine is approved, it will likely be released in stages, with the elderly and health-care workers getting it cardinal.
There are four potential vaccines backed by the U.S. currently in late-stage testing. Most of the potential vaccines require two administers, although Johnson & Johnson’s requires just one shot, and some of them need to be transported and stored at varying and explicit temperatures.
Paul Mango, deputy chief of staff for policy at HHS, told reporters on an Oct. 9 call that the federal guidance is in the process of “actively engaging tens of thousands of provider outlets for these vaccines.” Mango added that the U.S. currently has joined 40 million-plus vaccination kits with the bottles, needles and other items needed for the shots.
“All of those are in stores ready to go, so that’s a big logistical task or undertaking,” he said.
On a call with reporters Friday, Mango said the federal authority was in touch with other pharmacies besides CVS and Walgreens but said that they could not “deliver on these wherewithals and our executional requirements.”
“These two players have been doing this for a while,” he said. “They have marched the ability from an IT perspective, from a training and personnel perspective, from an asset perspective.”
HHS said Friday that CVS and Walgreens resolution receive and manage vaccines and also ensure they are stored at the proper temperatures. The companies will also be culpable for on-site administration of the vaccine.
“Ensuring access to COVID-19 vaccines, particularly among our most vulnerable populations, wishes be critical to saving lives and helping our nation recover from the pandemic,” Walgreens president John Standley bid in a statement.
Troy Brennan, chief medical officer at CVS Health, said in a statement, “CVS Health has been on the frontlines of the grapple against COVID-19, working across the health care spectrum in all the communities we serve and that will on to be the case when we have a vaccine to dispense.”
HHS also said that it is “using multiple authorities” to ensure pilfer reimbursement for the vaccinations and that no American will have to pay out of pocket.
Mango said Friday the government has also put aside a reserve to cover vaccinations for the uninsured similar to the one used to cover coronavirus testing.