It's Time to Embrace New Paradigms for Prevention
After two years of fighting COVID-19, we know that variants and surges will continue. By understanding how to use available data, we can predict when cases may increase or decrease throughout the United States and protect those vulnerable to severe disease.
Explore the New Paradigms for Prevention Fact Sheet to understand what we have learned over the past two years and how the senior care community must adjust to this new reality and advocate to keep our seniors safe.
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Proactively preparing and planning is critical as the surge of infections continues to mirror infections and trends recorded in 2020. Consider these preventative steps to take action against the spread of this deadly virus.
- Individuals who have had COVID-19 can be reinfected.
- COVID-19 vaccines are still working and preventing severe disease and death, but do not completely prevent infection.
- For adolescents and young adults, vaccines have been shown to significantly protect against long COVID-19, defined as symptoms continuing for four or more weeks.
- Herd immunity cannot be obtained with current vaccines. The current vaccines’ effectiveness wanes over time, especially among the elderly and those with weakened immune systems.
- The CDC, on March 30, 2022, updated guidance to say that adults 50 years and older who are not moderately or severely immunocompromised may choose to receive a second booster dose using an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine at least four months after the first booster dose.
ADJUSTING TO NEW REALITIES
If the virus is actively circulating within your community…
vaccination and boosting won’t be enough!
- Every senior care community can build confidence by creating an environment with multiple layers of protection. Building mitigation efforts should be linked to the level of COVID-19 spread in your community and individualized based on the level of risk.
- COVID-19 moves in predictable geographic patterns related to increased indoor activities. Accept the potential for summer (South) and winter (North) surge in cases and strategically control the impact by:
- Increasing mask usage and proactive testing 2x per week during a surge
- Improving indoor air quality
- Limiting exposure to all untested individuals
- Providing access to antivirals and monoclonal antibodies
ADVOCATING FOR SENIOR CARE
Current vaccines against nasal SARS-CoV-2 infections remain less effective, as asymptomatic transmission and vaccine-breakthrough infections occur. Research has shown that an effective vaccine must induce mucosal immunity for nasal prevention of COVID-19, since it is the initial entry point for the virus. Preventive medication along with vaccines could potentially prevent infection and the transmission of future variants.
You play a direct role in preparing, preventing, and protecting our nation’s seniors against recurrent COVID-19 variants and surges. Control over the virus is possible. Shine a light on your courageous team members and tell us about the challenges you continue to face in your community.
Join the conversation!
You play a direct role in preparing, preventing, and protecting our nation’s seniors in the face of rising infection cases across the United States. Shine a light on your courageous team members and tell us the challenges you continue to face over two years into the COVID-19 pandemic. Share your story today!