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DOH Issues DALs on Pfizer Booster Vaccination for Nursing Homes and ACFs

On Sept. 28th, the Department of Health (DOH) issued two Dear Administrator Letters (DALs) – one for adult care facilities (ACFs) and one for nursing homes – to facilitate and ensure a process moving forward for staff and resident primary and booster COVID-19 vaccinations. As members know, the Pfizer booster is now available for both staff and residents who received the Pfizer primary two-dose vaccine regimen.

DOH states that their objective is to ensure that every DOH-licensed nursing home and ACF has a clinical or pharmacy partner or the clinical capabilities to provide vaccinations and booster shots to residents and staff on an ongoing basis as new residents/staff are admitted/hired or express willingness to be vaccinated. To ensure full preparation for ongoing vaccinations, DOH is directing each provider, if they have not yet done so, to engage in outreach immediately with residents, families, staff, and their vaccine partners to plan for the administration of COVID-19 booster shots to the populations determined eligible. Providers should work with their clinical teams to assess booster eligibility and timing, clinical status of underlying medical conditions, risk of complication, comorbidities, and transmission/exposure/infection risk.

If facilities are unable to ensure, either through in-house clinical capabilities or third- party provider arrangements, the ability to vaccinate new staff or residents or provide or arrange for booster shots (i.e., mass vaccination sites, community sites), they must inform DOH so that it can work with providers to address solutions. Providers should also make sure that they develop and implement policies and procedures to carry out the primary and booster vaccination process.

Contact: Meg Everett, meverett@leadingageny.org, 518-929-9342