Bloom Senior Living Residents and Associates are Included as a Top Priority for COVID-19 Vaccination
PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Birmingham, Michigan (December 8, 2020) - Bloom Senior Living, a family-owned and operated provider of seniors housing throughout the Country since 1965, announced today that its communities have been included in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' first priority phase for receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. Bloom is extremely pleased that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and its Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices has prioritized residents and staff members of long-term care facilities, at no cost to them, in the first group of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution. This will include residents in all levels of care: independent living, assisted living, memory care and skilled nursing. This is extremely positive news -- ensuring residents and staff of senior living communities are among the first Americans to receive the vaccine once they become available will help limit the spread of this virus in one of the most vulnerable populations. This will be a tremendous benefit for Bloom residents and associates. Older adults living at home will face a longer wait.
As Bloom and other public outlets reported over the last month, there has been two significant vaccine developments released by Pfizer (and partner BioNTech) and Moderna showing efficacy well ahead of expectations. AstraZeneca/ Oxford also announced that its vaccine showed strong/robust immune responses. The three drugmakers are seeking regulatory approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the three different COVID-19 vaccines. Pfizer's vaccine will be assessed by a 15-member FDA advisory panel this Thursday, December 10, 2020, while Moderna's vaccine is expected to face evaluation on December 17, 2020. FDA staff will publicize their analytical findings at least two days before each meeting. Summary results disclosed in news releases thus far indicate that Pfizer's vaccine has an overall efficacy rate of 95% and efficacy of 94% in those 65 and older. Moncef Slaoui, Chief Science Adviser to Operation Warp Speed, said the Moderna's vaccine's overall efficacy is 94%, with 87% efficacy in preventing moderate disease in older adults. If the FDA panel approves, the administration will decide within days or weeks whether to authorize the vaccines for emergency use.
The United Kingdom authorized the Covid-19 vaccine from Pfizer for emergency use and is in the process of rolling it out, increasing hopes that the FDA will follow suit in short order.
Bloom already opted-in to the CDC's vaccination distribution program with CVS in order to offer, as soon as available, on-site vaccinations to our residents and community staff. All Bloom communities have been registered for the program. The COVID-19 vaccine is expected to be administered in two doses. The first one starts building protection, but the second one - a few weeks later – will provide the most protection.
According to Bloom’s Director of Operations, “while this health crisis impacted our industry, health care workers and seniors more than any other population, we're now first in line to start putting this virus behind us. We've been working selflessly taking care of our senior residents through the pandemic. We’re thankful the government and states will now be taking care of us.”
Bloom encourages its associates, residents and community to get vaccinated against this new virus and protect themselves, their family and our community. The vaccine provides another level of protection, so we can care for residents with greater peace of mind. The CDC reports that getting the COVID-19 vaccine is the safest option to beating it.
In addition to protecting ourselves physically, once the vaccine is administered -- Bloom will be in an even better position to safely relax stringent guidelines that we have in place right now, including visitation and programming. We believe this vaccine will go a long way towards not only providing physical protection, but helping our seniors continue to bloom emotionally and get back to the Bloom way of life! According to Bloom’s Director of Education & Development: “Bloom is a family company that has been providing care to seniors for more than 50-years. Resident rights are an integral part of our fabric, yet we also have an obligation to keep our senior residents safe. We know you’re tired, frustrated by guidelines and want to see, hug and be with your loved ones. We think this vaccine is going to help in that regard, and begin the process of returning to a pre-pandemic experience -- but now with even better protocols."
In that vein, while Bloom is thrilled to have this new tool for COVID-19 prevention, we’ll also continue to take precautions in our communities, including the use of personal protective equipment, testing and enhanced cleaning protocols, in order to keep our residents safe.
Bloom intends to continue sharing information with our community by e-marketing and Facebook posts over the coming days and weeks as we learn more about the vaccine distribution program, and to help spread the news about the first priority phase for receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.