OMH and OASAS Vaccine Distribution Implementation

December 22, 2020

Top Line message:  Hospitals and FQHCs will be vaccine providers for our staff and consumers.  Agencies will be connected with a particular vaccine implementation site (Hospital or FQ) in their local community ‘regional hub’ (as described previously).

Expectations on Providers:  Leaders of the agency should schedule vaccine appointments for care recipients.  State is counting on the agency to coordinate transport to / from site for vaccine administration, and to keep track of how many clients are vaccinated.   Suggestion:  Staff may get sick from administration of vaccine so must take this into account in terms of staffing coverage.

Notes: DoH is currently working on a scheduling application, an appointment portal, where an agency lead can go online and schedule an appointment to get an appointment with a local hospital or FQHCs for a consumer or staff, to register staff and consumers for the vaccine.   When portal is ‘live’ OMH will send notice to providers.   You can upload multiple people (batching) so as to schedule more than one person for an appointment at a time.  Regional Hubs are being told by OMH how many people may be coming their way from OMH programs and services.

Different process for NYC.  City ordering vaccines directly and on behalf of hospitals and FQs. More to come on this.

DOH guidance including OMH and OASAS voluntary setting considerations:

DOH page with copies of current consent and screening form and guidance (go to Documents and Guidance Section)

Vaccine information sheets are here

Vaccine Priority for OMH Programs and Services Staff:

 Those working in congregate programs and/or those who have frequent and direct contact with clients.  (Congregate SRO, Congregate Supported Housing included here).

Residents:   Those in congregate (bedded) settings as well as those in bedded programs where more than one individual is living together.
Other groups state leads are looking at to prioritize:  staff working in outpatient programs who have direct or close contact with consumers and are at great risk of transmission.  This would include:  ACT Teams, Mobile Teams, etc.

Providers should read guidance and reflect on how to mobilize and transport.   Think about a stratification process.

There is already a screening tool on the DoH Website that gives providers an idea of standard vaccination questions that should be considered (those who may need to speak to their healthcare prof before getting a vaccine, etc.)

Vaccine Priority for OASAS Programs and Services Staff:

OASAS Residential Staff:  All community based and state staff working in OASAS residential programs fall under 1A status for vaccination.  This includes OTP staff.  OASAS staff (and clients) will be directed to go to designated hospitals, FQ’s and other designated vaccine sites for their immunization.  OASAS will provide further details shortly.

Vaccine appointment reservation system (as described in OMH update) will be available shortly so providers can make single person or group appointments for vaccination for staff (and eventually, clients) if desired.

OASAS Residential Clients:  According to ACIP (federal Independent Advisory Board) guidelines, definition of long-term care clients (adult homes, nursing homes – those unable to live on their own without the constant assistance of staff)does not include OASAS residential clients.

NY now reluctantly required to put OASAS patient population in a later vaccination group in order to maintain status as a state that conforms with federal rules that (if we violated these rules) could risk our continued receipt of vaccine shipments.  It looks like our residential patient populations will fall into category 1C.  NYC providers will receive guidance directly from DoHMH as to how and when to schedule appointments for vaccine.   Additional guidance forthcoming.