ANCOR in the News - 12.17.20

RESOLUTION: In Support of COVID-19 Vaccine Adoption and Promotion of Best Practices

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RESOLUTION: In Support of COVID-19 Vaccine Adoption and Promotion of Best Practices

Adopted by ANCOR Board of Directors, Dec 16, 2020

WHEREAS, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented the world with unprecedented health challenges that affect every element of life; and

WHEREAS, individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities are at significantly higher risk of dying from COVID-19, according to three recent studies which found that people with I/DD were between two and ten times likelier than members of the general population to die from COVID-19[1]; and

WHEREAS, ANCOR continues to advocate relentlessly to ensure people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their staff be prioritized for vaccination in the initial populations eligible for vaccination; and

WHEREAS, the disability provider community must utilize all resources available to provide care and to limit the spread of the deadly virus in the interest of public health and to be consistent with the ethical principle of “do no harm”; and

WHEREAS, community-based providers of long-term supports and services for people with intellectual and other disabilities have long been leaders in infection control while serving infected and non-infected individuals; and

WHEREAS, the Food and Drug Administration has approved at least one vaccine candidate proven during clinical trials to provide significant protection from COVID-19 infections; and

WHEREAS, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention has recommended that vaccination of all health care personnel is the highest priority as a strategy to contain and control the spread and impact of the COVID-19 pandemic; and 

WHEREAS, immunization of direct support professionals and clinicians with direct contact with individuals receiving services, as well as all other staff interacting with aforementioned professionals, may help prevent transmission of COVID-19, reduce the risk of infirmity and death among people receiving services, and protect staff from infirmity and death.

It is hereby RESOLVED that:

The American Network of Community Options and Resources urges all ANCOR members, as well as all providers of services to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, to:

  • Encourage all staff employed by community providers to receive a COVID-19 vaccination at the earliest possible time consistent with vaccine guidance.
  • Provide the support necessary to gain access to vaccines for community provider staff.
  • Provide access to comprehensive information and guidance to community provider staff regarding COVID-19 vaccination to permit staff to make well-informed decisions regarding immunization.
  • Encourage and support the availability and administration of COVID-19 vaccines to individuals receiving services and their family members in instances in which family members provide direct care.
  • Continue to employ the effective infection control measures that have been successful to date, in addition to supporting vaccination of staff and individuals receiving services.

It is further RESOLVED that the undersigned members of the Board of Directors of the American Network of Community Options and Resources pledge to receive the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as it is available within the applicable designated group prioritization.

[1] Data recently collected from eight states in partnership with ANCOR’s state association members found that people with I/DD were twice as likely as members of the general population to die from COVID-19, despite being no likelier to contract the virus. An analysis of insurance claims data conducted by Fair Health found people with “developmental disorders” were among the likeliest to die from COVID-19, and another study in the UK found people with Down Syndrome were 10 times likelier to die from COVID-19 compared to members of the general population.