British Columbia to Mandate Vaccines for Visitors to Long-Term Acute Care Facilities

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Visitors to long-term care homes in British Columbia will soon need to be fully immunized against COVID-19.

The mandate goes into effect on October 12 and extends to visitors to acute care centers on October 26.

Provincial health worker Dr. Bonnie Henry made the announcement on Tuesday, explaining that the move comes as the province enters a period of respiratory illness and challenges with the COVID-19 virus.

“We will of Classes have exceptions for certain situations, As palliative and end of life care, ”said Henry.

As of Monday, there were 18 households active in these settings.

Meanwhile, long-term care workers who receive their first dose before next Tuesday can continue to work, but they will need to commit to receiving their second dose within 35 days. The previous deadline for the first dose was September 13, but was extended to October 12.

“This recognizes that it is important for us to have vaccinated people working in these high risk settings, and we encourage every person in long term care [be vaccinated], we know that vaccination rates are… in some places, not yet high enough ”,

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People who want to volunteer or want to take on other roles in a long-term care facility (eg, hairdresser, podiatrist, etc.) should also be vaccinated.

If workers decide to get vaccinated after the deadline, they will have to wait seven days before returning to work with Extra Precautions in place and committing to a second dose.

Some people will be medically exempt, but additional preventive measures will be put in place for these situations.

Health Minister Adrian Dix said the Northern Health Region has the lowest vaccination rate among healthcare workers, where 88% of staff received the first dose. In Fraser Health and Vancouver Coastal Health, the rate is 97 percent, while Vancouver Island has 95 percent and the interior has 93 percent.

“Now is the time to get vaccinated… as well as to support such important efforts in long-term care to ensure that everyone is protected,” he said.