2020 has been a harrowing experience for everyone due to the onset of COVID-19. Unfortunately, older adults are some of the most susceptible parts of the population when it comes to being at risk from the novel coronavirus.
It is crucial for senior citizens living in assisted living communities and nursing homes to be the first among those offered the COVID-19 vaccines. Of course, if you have an old parent, an aged loved one, or you are a senior citizen living in such a senior care facility yourself, you might have concerns regarding the new vaccine. It is completely alright to have a lot of questions regarding it. In fact, we encourage getting as much information about it as possible.
Several of our residents at Royal Garden Board & Care and their loved ones have all kinds of questions regarding the safety of COVID-19 vaccines.
The most common question is, “Are COVID-19 vaccines safe for seniors?”
Yes, they are. We are also going to discuss several other questions you might have regarding the vaccine.
Questions Many Senior Citizens Have Regarding COVID-19 Vaccines
Here are answers to some of the most common questions our residents and their loved ones have regarding the safety of COVID-19 vaccines for seniors.
Q. When will COVID-19 vaccines be available for senior citizens living in assisted living facilities and nursing homes?
- The exact date for COVID-19 vaccines may vary state by state. However, older adults living in assisted living communities, nursing homes, and other long-term care facilities will be among the first groups offered a vaccine. The inoculation for seniors in long-term care facilities in California is currently underway, but the rollout of vaccines is considerably slow.
Q. I am a senior citizen. If a vaccine is made available for me, should I get it?
- We highly recommend that older adults receive the vaccine as early as possible. The information that the medical community has so far indicates that the vaccine works very well and is completely safe for senior citizens. Like with any new treatment, there are some things we cannot say with 100% certainty. For instance, it may be too early to know whether there are any rare long-term side effects. At the moment, we have every reason to believe that anyone who can get the vaccine should get it.
Q. Should I still take a vaccine if I live in a nursing home or if I live by myself?
- The vaccine has been found to be safe and effective for older adults that participated in clinical trials. There have not been many clinical trials involving senior citizens living in long-term care facilities. However, based on our experience with other vaccines, we do not believe that the risk of side effects for seniors living in assisted living communities will be any different from those living in the general community. Additionally, our experience with other vaccines also shows no change in effectiveness for vaccines in assisted living communities.
Q. How can I be sure that the vaccine is safe for me?
- All of the vaccines were studied with various age groups, including older adults over the age of 65. There were no serious issues detected before the rollout began. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also has a substantial plan to monitor for any side effects of the vaccine.
Q. Does the vaccine have any side effects for older citizens?
- Based on what the medical community knows so far regarding the vaccine, the only notable side effects include headaches, low-grade fever, tiredness, and arm soreness. Older adults living in assisted living communities do not need to worry because the staff is well-equipped to provide any assistance in case they experience any of these side effects.
Q. Are there any side effects of the vaccine on seniors who have underlying medical conditions or taking several medications?
- There is not enough information regarding this yet. Older adults taking multiple medicines or suffering from several conditions were not included in the initial trials. There is no indication of additional side effects for older adults with multiple conditions or taking medicines based on experience with other vaccines.
Q. Does it matter which vaccine I get?
- Most people will not get to choose which vaccine they will get. Based on the information so far, there is no proof that any vaccine is more effective than others. We recommend getting the first vaccine that is available to you.
Q. Are people living in assisted living facilities or nursing homes at greater risk of contracting the disease?
- One of the most terrifying realities about COVID-19 has been the high death rate among people living in nursing homes, assisted living communities, and other long-term care facilities. Older adults are more susceptible to the complications caused by the disease because they have weaker immune systems, making them more prone to infection. That is why we highly recommend getting your COVID-19 vaccine as soon as it is available.
Q. What happens if an older adult living in an assisted living facility or nursing home refuses the vaccine?
- In the US, every person has the right to refuse medical treatment, provided that they are sound of mind. Many older residents may be unable to entirely understand the benefits and risks of the treatment being offered to them. If someone in our assisted living community refuses to get the vaccine, we first make sure that they have the capacity to make their own medical decisions. If we deem them unfit to make the decision, we refer to the opinion of their loved ones.
An Ideal and Safe Assisted Living Community for Senior Citizens
The entire situation with COVID-19 and how it has affected people worldwide is frightening. Fortunately, we were closely following the entire situation as it developed right from the start. At Royal Garden Board & Care Homes, we have been on top of the situation and implementing various measures to ensure the safety and security of all our residents.
If you are looking for an assisted living community for your parents in California that ensures top-notch measures for their safety, Royal Garden Board & Care Homes could be the best option for you to consider. We welcome you and your parents to visit our assisted living communities to examine all the facilities and amenities your parents can enjoy as a part of our community.
Royal Garden Board & Care Homes is one of Encino, Tarzana, and Valley Glens California’s finest assisted living facilities. Here, your parents will experience the privacy and freedom they deserve while receiving the attention they need. To find out more about our services, contact us today.