60% of nursing home staff in Ohio are refusing to get vaccinated, according to the state governor

  • Ohio Governor Mike DeWine said that 60% of nursing home staff there don't want to get a COVID-19 vaccine. 
  • "We aren't going to make them, but we wish they had a higher compliance," said DeWine at a press conference.
  • According to the Covid Tracking Project, 38% of all COVID-19 deaths in the US have been nursing home residents. 
  • In Ohio, staff and residents of nursing homes are getting top priority for vaccines.
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Ohio Governor Mike DeWine on Wednesday expressed concern that too few frontline healthcare staff were getting vaccinated against COVID-19, and said that 60% of nursing home staff chose not to get the shot. 

"We aren't going to make them, but we wish they had a higher compliance, DeWine said at a press conference Wednesday, according to The Columbus Dispatch. 

"Our message today is the train may not be coming back for a while."

DeWine said he wanted to instill a "sense of urgency" among those eligible for the shot. 

"I'm not satisfied with where we are in Ohio," he said. "We're not moving fast enough, but we're going to get there."

DeWine did not say why so many nursing home workers were not to receive the vaccination. 

Ohio's Department of Health did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

Getting staff at nursing homes vaccinated is one of the top priorities for public health officials.

Residents of nursing homes account for 38% of all US deaths from the virus, according to the COVID Tracking Project, launched by The Atlantic magazine.

In recent weeks the number of nursing home COVID-19 deaths in Ohio has spiked, per The Columbus Dispatch, underscoring the urgency of getting staff vaccinated. 

The two vaccines that have been approved for use by federal government health regulators are being rolled out in Ohio in partnership with pharmacies including Walgreens and CVS. 

Older adults and teachers are next to receive the vaccine in the state after frontline healthcare workers, according to Ohio's vaccination plan. 

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