Most rabbis do not get to receive the opportunity to be amongst the first to receive a vaccination against COVID-19, yet, as a chaplain working at such a facility, I have the wonderful opportunity to receive this vaccination.
I was very excited on Thursday when I received the first dose of the vaccine, as it is an important first step to not only getting our facility opening up and protecting both my family and me, but also on a much broader scale of opening up society and getting things open again.
I was shocked and deeply disturbed to hear that so many staff have refused the vaccine. In fact, when we first had sign-ups, less than 40% of the staff had agreed to receive the vaccine. I was deeply shocked that we ultimately had just a little bit over 60% of the staff getting vaccinated on Thursday. However, this is apparently better than the state average, as nearly 60% of staff at such facilities have refused the vaccine (42% of nursing home staff in Ohio have agreed to get vaccinated, according to the numbers shared with me in a letter published to our residents and families by our building administrator).
It is deeply concerning and worrying that so many people have refused to take this important first step in getting out of this pandemic. Clearly, we still have a long road ahead of us….