PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. – Last week, home health workers had a huge hit.
They were eventually labeled “essential” health workers in getting the covid vaccine. But now they still have a struggle to make sure their vulnerable patients have access to it.
What you need to know
- Domestic workers classified as “essential workers” last week; You can now have the vaccine
- Workers want to make sure that their vulnerable patients also have access to vaccines
- MORE INFORMATION: Vaccination week
“I would love if they come in and vaccinate us because I am not going anywhere to get vaccinated,” said Melissa Decampos. “We stay indoors all the time. I hardly go to the grocery store.”
“We both have weakened immune systems and I don’t want to die and leave her and I don’t want her to die of COVID.”
Decampos has BrightStar Care nurses at home around the clock, looking after their 14 year old granddaughter who is medically and physically impaired. Since Covid, Decampos, who also has cancer, says that she cannot be too careful.
She is not alone.
Robin Hazel, president of BrightStar, a home care agency, says their customers are among the most at risk, but their employees were only eligible for the vaccine last week after pushing lawmakers to add it.
Now Hazel is working to get approval for his nurses to give the vaccine to their patients in their homes.
He said this week that the health department approved his request and now it’s just about getting the doses.
“So my plan is, once we have access to the vaccine, to get it into the community, and I think we’ll be the first of our kind to do this, and I think we’ll meet a need, our people.” to get vaccinated, “said Hazel said.
Hazel said he believes the home health industry was simply caught between the cracks during the initial planning when the vaccine was released.
He said he will continue to work with lawmakers and make sure they keep an eye on them.