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March 28, 2022
2022 Update: COVID-19 Vaccine Mandates and What This Means For Your Agency

*This post has been updated with current information since the original posting date of October 27, 2021. This post is meant to serve as an educational tool. Due to the ever-changing vaccination landscape and information delivered in each state, we recommend you contact your local government for further guidance. 

COVID-19 has altered the home care space as much as, if not more than, everything else in our daily lives. Once several vaccines were FDA approved, mandates begun rolling out across various states requiring home care agencies to ensure their caregivers are compliant. Through trying to stay up to date on this ever-changing landscape, we’ve noticed just how unique every state’s situation is. We know this can be hard to manage for your home care agency, so we wanted to create one location for all the information your agency needs specific to your state.  

We've now updated our list of resources for each state and their specific mandates and legislation regarding vaccinations and their impact on the home care industry.  This information is changing quickly for many states so be sure to seek additional advice locally if you have questions. We hope this resource continues to help your agency stay vaccine compliant for the remainder of 2022. 

In September 2021, the Biden Administration came out with its plan to ensure that vaccinations against the COVID-19 pandemic continue to move forward to protect those in our community, over 17 million health care workers at Medicare and Medicaid participating hospitals and other health care settings. Much of that plan has been updated with new information, so please check the states below to see the current information that’s been broadcasted for your state. 

  

What this means for your home care agency 

If your state announced a specific deadline that all caregivers need to be vaccinated by, then staying on top of their vaccination status is crucial. Some of these deadlines and mandates have changed in 2022, so please review your state below for the updated information.  Not only does this noncompliance put these people out of jobs, but it also severely decreases the number of caregivers available to serve our vulnerable population.  

We highly recommend using this tool to monitor vaccination status for your caregivers to prevent a drastic loss of agency staff. Proof of Vaccination allows your caregivers to easily upload their vaccine information directly through the app which speeds up the tracking process for your agency staff. The more efficient your caregivers can be with certain tasks, such as submitting their vaccinations for approval, the better able they are to provide more attention and better overall care to their patients. And with rapid decreases in available caregivers, the easier it is to perform admin work to prove compliance, the less stressed and happier they will be on the job. 

  

“Is my home care agency required to comply?” 

During our research to compile this information, we saw some sources stating that since the mandates state “home healthcare,” that it doesn’t apply to the unskilled home care industry. However, OSHA defines home healthcare as “workers who may be home health aides, personal/home care aides, companions, nursing assistants or home health nurses [that are] are employed in patients' homes and in community-based services such as group homes.” Therefore, it is safe to assume that even if a mandate doesn’t explicitly say “home care,” it falls under the umbrella of “home healthcare” and your agency is still likely required to comply. 

While there isn’t currently a federal vaccine mandate, multiple states have implemented their own mandates. We’ve listed resources below to help you find information in your state. 

*This post is meant to serve as an educational tool. Due to the ever-changing vaccination landscape and information delivered in each state, we recommend you contact your local government for further guidance. 

  

Alabama - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Alaska - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Arizona - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Arkansas - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

California - All healthcare workers are required to be fully vaccinated and acquire a booster by March 1, 2022. 

Adult Care Facilities and Direct Care Worker Vaccine Requirement - This announcement states that staff in adult and direct care settings must be vaccinated and acquire their booster by March 1, 2022, or within 15 days of becoming eligible for a booster if they are not eligible as of March 1, 2022. 

Colorado- All state employees and healthcare workers must either be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or participate in twice-weekly testing as of September 20, 2021. 

Connecticut- All state hospital and long-term care employees must receive their initial vaccination doses by September 27, 2021, and their booster by February 11, 2022. 

Delaware- All state hospital and long-term care employees must receive their first vaccine dosage by September 30, 2021 or undergo regular testing. 

Florida - Vaccine mandates for any employee are prohibited 

Georgia- Vaccine mandates for state employees are prohibited; it does not apply to private sector employers. 

Hawaii - State and county employees who do not prove they are vaccinated shall be subject to regular COVID-19 testing; individual healthcare systems have been implementing their own mandates, so confirm on their website for up-to-date information. 

Idaho - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Illinois - Workers in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities must have their booster dose by March 15, 2022, if they’re eligible. 

Indiana- Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination, 

Iowa- Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, howeverHouse File 889 prohibiting mandatory disclosure of vaccination status 

Kansas- Vaccine requirements are prohibited unless authorized by an act of Legislature. 

Kentucky- Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Louisiana - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Maine- All healthcare workers must be fully vaccinated which was enforced on October 29, 2021.  

Maryland- All healthcare workers in nursing homes and hospitals are required to be fully vaccinated by September 1, 2021. 

Massachusetts- All healthcare workers must have their booster no later than February 28, 2022, if they’re eligible. 

Michigan - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Minnesota - State mandate for state employees; individual healthcare systems have been implementing their own mandates, so confirm on their website for up-to-date information. 

Mississippi - All healthcare workers are required to be fully vaccinated or receive testing two times weekly.  

Missouri - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Montana - Does not allow the requirement of vaccines for any employee, with an exemption for licensed nursing homes, long-term care facilities, or assisted living facilities. 

Nebraska- Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Nevada - All employees that work with vulnerable populations in state-operated, licensed healthcare settings or state-operated detention facilities must provide proof of vaccination by November 1, 2021. 

New Hampshire- House Bill 220 states that no person may be compelled to receive a vaccine from the state of New Hampshire. This applies to county nursing homes, state hospitals, or any other medical facility or provider operated by the state of New Hampshire. Private sector employers may still require the vaccine. 

New Jersey -  All health care workers must be vaccinated and boosted by February 28, 2022.  

New Mexico - All health care workers must receive their booster by January 17, 2022 or within four weeks of becoming eligible. 

New York - All health care workers must at least get one dose by September 27, 2021. *Pending approval for mandate for booster  

North Carolina - Requirement for state employees to be fully vaccinated by September 1, 2021, with support of hospital systems requiring vaccinations for all healthcare workers. 

North Dakota - House Bill 1465 implements the freedom of choice for health care services. 

Ohio - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Oklahoma - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Oregon- Healthcare workers are required to be fully vaccinated by October 18, 2021, or six weeks after full FDA approval, whichever is later. 

Pennsylvania - All commonwealth employees in state health care facilities and high-risk congregate-care facilities will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by September 7, 2021 or undergo weekly testing. 

Rhode Island- All employees, interns, and volunteers in RIDOH-licensed healthcare facilities and all RIDOH-licensed healthcare providers must receive their final dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by October 1, 2021. 

South Carolina - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

South Dakota - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination 

Tennessee - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. Private businesses are prohibited from compelling or taking adverse actions against a person to compel them to provide proof of vaccination. 

Texas- No entity in Texas can compel receipt of a COVID-19 vaccine by any individual, including an employee or a consumer, who objects to such vaccination for any reason of personal conscience, based on a religious belief, or for medical reasons, including prior recovery from COVID-19. 

Utah - Governmental entity may not require, directly or indirectly, that an individual receive an emergency COVID-19 vaccine unless the individual is both acting in a public health or medical setting and required to receive vaccinations in order to perform the employee’s assigned duties and responsibilities, or pursuant to a non-discretionary requirement under federal law. 

Vermont- Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

Virginia - State workers are required to show proof that they are fully vaccinated or be tested for COVID-19 every week starting September 1, 2021 

Washington - Proclamation 21-14 states a requirement for most state workers, and on-site contractors and volunteers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment. State employees and workers in private health care and long-term care settings must be fully vaccinated on or before October 18, 2021. The governor releasedFAQs followingProclamation 21-14, which adds that the vaccination proclamation applies to “employees in private sector health care and in long term care settings including but not limited to nursing homes, adult family homes, assisted living, enhanced services facilities, RTFs, and other treatment facilities.” 

West Virginia - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination 

Wisconsin - All state employees, contractors, and interns are required to be vaccinated beginning October 18, 2021 or submit to weekly testing. 

Wyoming - Currently no state mandate impacting home care agencies, however, agencies may require vaccination. 

 

Looking for help getting and staying compliant? CareConnect is a leading workforce optimization platform built specifically for home care agencies that does just that, from hiring to shift booking to eLearning. Reach out to our team today to learn how we can help you! 

Disclaimer:  

CareConnect provides the materials in this update for informational purposes only. Recipients should not construe the update as legal advice and should consult with an attorney before acting or relying upon the information contained herein.