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Vaccine And PPE Distribution - Take Action Today!

Urge your governor and state health department to make HME a priority!

We, along with many others, are following the news and waiting for information regarding the release of the COVID-19 vaccination. We are hopeful that HME providers will be included in the priority group, as well as for continued PPE distribution.

Please reach out to your governor’s office today asking them to make HME a priority when it comes to distribution of PPE and vaccines.

It is crucial that HME suppliers and their staff also be protected so they can continue to care for the sick during this time. Patients healing at home is more important than ever right now. Allowing patients to heal in the comfort of their own home limits the number of people they come in contact with, opens up hospital bed availability for severe COVID-19 cases, and saves millions of dollars when calculating the cost of a hospital stay. Plus, the mental health of healing at home versus being alone in a hospital is incalculable.

We ask that you reach out to your governor’s office today asking them to include HME providers as a priority when distributing PPE and vaccinations. You can easily send a message to your governor. Simply click here and enter in your information, and your request will be sent to your governor’s office. Please encourage all of your co-workers, friends, and family to do the same!

Below is also some information that our team has gathered regarding PPE and vaccination distribution.

Information regarding the vaccination distribution by state can be found in this article from the Washington Post: https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2020/health/covid-vaccine-states-distribution-doses/

Information on PPE Distribution. Many HME suppliers are still struggling to get necessary PPE. Sadly, we are hearing the country is producing enough masks, gowns, and other PPE, but they are not reaching the healthcare workers that need them. Read this article from Bloomberg regarding the issue.

The HME Guide to Continued Patient Care During a Pandemic provides our members with information on PPE, telehealth, virtual set-up, patient monitoring, rapid testing and disinfection, and other helpful resources. Click here to view.

Can employers force employees to get the COVID-19 vaccine?

Mark Higley reviewed various sources of research and summarizes that in many cases, yes, an employer can make a vaccination a requirement if you want to continue working there. However, there are significant exceptions for potential concerns related to any disability the employee may have and for religious beliefs that prohibit vaccinations. Generally, experts state that employers are more likely to simply encourage their workers to get immunized rather that issue a company-wide mandate. Employment in the United States is generally ‘at will,’ which means that an employer can set working conditions.

Bottom line: employers can set health and safety work conditions, with a few limits. The National Law Review offers additional details regarding exceptions that you can read here.

Please continue to stay tuned regarding any updates on PPE and vaccine distribution.