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Vaccination Rates Increasing as Care Center Mandate Approaches

The most recent Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) update on long-term care vaccination shows that staff vaccination rates have increased in the last couple of months as the mandate for vaccination of care center staff draws closer.

Staff rates for full vaccination were 72% in all care centers and 66% in all reporting assisted living settings, increasing 7% in care centers and 4% in assisted living settings in the last two months. The data is the first assisted living information we have had in a month, as MDH is now spacing out those surveys more. We are above the national care center staff vaccination rate of 65%.

With the rule on the federal mandate for care center staff expected later this month, the increase in staff vaccination is a good sign that the impact may be less significant than is we fear. However, regional differences in vaccination rates will ensure that the effect of a mandate will surely not be identical throughout the state. The Twin Cities Metro area has the highest staff vaccination rates of any region, at 79% in care centers and 75% in assisted living. Meanwhile, the MDH central region, which includes St. Cloud and the Brainerd area, has the lowest staff vaccination rates of 59% in care centers and 60% in assisted living.

Resident vaccination rates remain excellent, at 91% fully vaccinated in care centers and 95% fully vaccinated in assisted living. The general population vaccination rate in Minnesota has also been improving; 74% of those 16 and older and 94% of those 65 and older have received at least one vaccine dose. Our staff and resident rates are close to those, which means that our staff and residents reflect the general population.

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