News Release

Analysis Finds The Share of Nursing Home Staff Who Have Been Vaccinated Against COVID-19 Varies Substantially by State

Vaccination Mandate Has Been the Focus of Litigation By Some States

The share of nursing home staffers who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 varies considerably by state, from 70 percent in Ohio to 99 percent in Maine, Rhode Island, New York and Massachusetts, a new KFF analysis finds. The national average is 84 percent.

The analysis of federal nursing home data for the week ending Jan. 30 comes as providers strive to comply with a federal mandate that health care workers whose employers participate in Medicare or Medicaid be vaccinated against the novel coronavirus. Although some states have sued to challenge this rule, the Supreme Court recently let it go into effect.

Facilities in different states have different deadlines to comply with the mandate, in part due to ongoing state litigation challenging the federal rule. Deadlines for workers to have received their first dose ranged from January 27 to February 21, depending on the state. States with earlier deadlines generally reported higher completed staff vaccination rates than states with later deadlines.

Facilities won’t face enforcement action from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services if more than 80 percent of their staff receive their first dose by their deadline, and they have a plan to achieve a 100 percent single-dose staff vaccination rate within 60 days.

The analysis is based on 10,627 nursing homes reporting complete vaccination data, or about 70 percent of all nursing homes nationally.

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The independent source for health policy research, polling, and news, KFF is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.