TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — The President announced he will be directing the Department of Health and Human Services to make new regulations to mandate vaccines for nursing home staff.
If facilities don't comply, they could lose the ability to participate in Medicare and Medicaid and receive funding from the federal programs.
According to Florida Health Care Association, that funding is essential in Florida because Medicaid makes up about 51 percent of revenue and Medicare makes up 30 percent of revenue.
"So the issue is going to be, what is that going to do to the staffing?" Governor Ron Desantis said in a press conference Thursday addressing the new federal mandate.
According to Florida Health Care Association, 92 percent of Florida nursing centers face serious workforce shortages.
Chief Executive Officer Emmett Reed released the following statement saying quote:
“We appreciate our state and national leaders’ efforts to keep COVID-19 rates low, and our long-term care centers have been working tirelessly for more than a year and a half with the same goal in mind. However, by the Federal Government singling out nursing homes with a vaccination requirement that does not apply to health care personnel at other locations and in other health care sectors, we fear that our already critical workforce shortages will worsen.
President Biden announced this order to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
New data compiled by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services show about 60 percent of nursing home staff are vaccinated nationwide, which is lower than 82 percent of residents.
This could take effect as early as next month, but no specific date has been set at this time.