When states and health facilities started establishing immunization mandates, there was talk that this would lead to staff shortages, but it didn’t really work.
âWe have staff,â said Tiffany Billig, administrator of Maple Shade Meadows Senior Living in Nesquehoning. âWe are actually doing really well. “
Billig said they still had openings in general, but the nursing staff were stable.
âWe have a very good staff. “
Alicia Silliman, administrator of the Hometown Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Tamaqua, said she lost staff earlier in the pandemic, but it was because they were afraid of catching the virus and / or bringing it back to home to vulnerable family members.
Currently, about 65% of its nurses are employees and 35% come from agencies.
âWe’re still looking to reduce that,â she said.
Silliman said she offered jobs to agencies, but also promoted from within and provided in-house training and education for people who wanted to become licensed practical nurses.
âIt’s a rewarding career,â she says.
On August 10, Governor Tom Wolf announced that all employees in public health facilities and high-risk collective care facilities should be fully immunized against COVID-19 by September 7 or undergo weekly testing. of disease. All new external employees as of September 7 should also be vaccinated before starting their employment.
Hometown is a private facility, but Silliman said she would appreciate more advice from the state.
âEven though we offered the vaccine to our agency staff, many of them did not accept it,â she said.
Among Hometown employees, 70.4% are fully vaccinated as of Sept. 26, along with 93.7% of residents, according to data from the National Healthcare Safety Network of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Data on Maple Shade was not included in the report, which is available on the state Department of Health’s website.
According to the CDC report on the DOH website, only 23.2% of qualified nursing homes, which include both private and public facilities, have an 80% fully immunized staff rate as of September 26.
Locally, vaccination rates for staff in facilities in the report include:
â¢ Mahoning Valley Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Lehighton: 66.3% full, 2.4% partial;
â¢ Summit at Blue Mountain Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Lehighton: 92.8% full, 2% partial, and;
â¢ Weatherwood Health and Rehabilitation Center, Weatherly: 56.7% full; 1% partial.
â¢ Brookmont Health Care Center, effort: 68.3% full, 4% partial;
â¢ Gardens At Stroud, East Stroudsburg: 58.9% full, 0.8% partial;
â¢ Pleasant Valley Manor / Monroe County Home, Stroudsburg: 41.4% occupancy; 0% partial, and;
â¢ Gardens At York Terrace, Pottsville: 77.6% full, 1.2% partial;
â¢ Manorcare Health Services-Pottsville: no data was available;
â¢ Pottsville Rehabilitation and Nursing Center, Pottsville: 37.5% full, 1.6% partial;
â¢ Rosewood Rehabilitation and Nursing Center, Schuylkill Haven: 69.9% full, 3.3% partial;
â¢ Schuylkill Center, Pottsville: 77.1% full, 1.1% partial;
â¢ St. Luke Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Coaldale: 100% full
Silliman said the biggest hurdle his care facility faces is the need for more residents.
âWe had a hard time,â she said of filling the beds. âWe tried to get our census back. Residents wanted to return home, due to COVID. “
There are no cases of COVID-19 in Hometown, Silliman said. “There is no reason to be afraid.”
When the pandemic first struck, yes, they and everyone else lacked personal protective clothing, she said. But now they’re well stocked and have plenty of masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, and whatever else they need to keep the center clean and residents safe.
“They don’t need to be afraid anymore,” she said.
Hometown has 150 beds and 93 residents, so they’re at 62% capacity.
They are not alone in the struggle to obtain residents. Many nursing facilities in the DOH report showed a low number of censuses around 60%. Locally, however, census counts average around 70%.
â¢ Mahoning Valley Nursing and Rehabilitation Center: 106 residents, 142 beds, 74.6% capacity;
â¢ Summit at Blue Mountain Nursing and Rehabilitation Center: 58 residents, 91 beds, 63.7% capacity;
â¢ Weatherwood Health and Rehabilitation Center: 172 residents, 200 beds, 86% capacity.
â¢ Brookmont Health Center: 93 residents, 119 beds, capacity 78.1%;
â¢ Gardens in Stroud: 92 inhabitants, 127 beds, 72.4% capacity;
â¢ Pleasant Valley Manor / Monroe County Home: 92 residents, 174 beds, 52.8% capacity.
â¢ Gardens at York Terrace: 62 residents, 80 beds, 77.5% of capacity
â¢ Manorcare Health Services-Pottsville: no data was communicated to the DOH
â¢ Pottsville Nursing and Rehabilitation Center: 91 residents, 179 beds, 50.8% capacity;
â¢ Rosewood Rehabilitation and Nursing Center: 128 residents, 142 beds, 90% capacity;
â¢ Schuylkill Center: 144 residents, 190 beds, 75.7% capacity;
â¢ St. Luke Nursing and Rehabilitation Center: 41 residents, 48 ââbeds, 85.4% capacity.