HQI President’s Message

Quality Quarterly Article

We’re 18+ months into the pandemic, but your staff may feel like it’s March 2020 again. Some of your hospitals may be dealing with a current influx of COVID-19 patients that is straining resources to the max, along with a workforce shortage. But no matter the need, through surge after surge, they’ve been there for their communities.  

Now, it’s time for the communities to step up. While we know that vaccination is key to getting out of this pandemic, the rates have been slowing in recent weeks and months.  

The recent full approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the Pfizer vaccine for ages 16 and over, bring great hope that it will help those who remain unvaccinated to get off the fence. Additionally, last week, Pfizer said its vaccine for ages 5-11 is safe and has shown a strong immune response. It plans to submit its data to the FDA soon for emergency use authorization, and once data are submitted, the vaccine could be authorized for younger children in a matter of weeks.   

The vaccine has proven to be very effective at keeping people from getting seriously ill, becoming hospitalized, or even dying from COVID-19. Regardless, we know the skeptics remain.  

To help those still on the fence, the American Hospital Association has released new public service announcements and related digital content encouraging vaccination against COVID-19 by still-unvaccinated health care workers and members of the public. In the videos, clinicians share their reasons for getting the vaccine and answer questions from those who may still be unvaccinated.   

And your clinicians can do the same to encourage vaccination. Getting vaccinated is the right thing to do, and will help ensure the health care system doesn’t become overwhelmed and remains strong and able to continue to care for all.