Employer COVID-19 Vaccine Update
As COVID vaccine availability ramps up in PA and other states, hope for returning to some sense of normality in our lives has arrived. This Employer Update includes the latest from UPMC Health Plan on vaccination efforts.
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania phases for vaccine distribution
Pennsylvania’s plan for distribution of the vaccine is in phases, and as of today is still in phase 1A. We expect this to change in the very near future based on the pace of vaccinations over the past couple of weeks. UPMC, as a health system, has administered over 250,000 doses of vaccine to date.
UPMC has recently expanded its regional vaccine clinics to include more than 25 locations. Across every region it serves, UPMC is operationalizing new community vaccination clinics each week. As the health system receives vaccine supply from the Commonwealth, its network of clinics will be able to accommodate up to 80,000 vaccinations per week. All UPMC COVID-19 clinics are appointment only. If your employees are eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccination, they can register with UPMC. Read UPMC Expands Regional Vaccine Clinics.
What UPMC Health Plan is doing to assist in the effort to vaccinate our members
UPMC Health Plan is making outreach calls to members eligible to receive the vaccine when there is a clinic with open appointments at UPMC, a pharmacy or other vaccine provider. We identify members who live in the area near where the clinic is taking place and call to make them aware of the clinic and provide instructions on how to get an appointment. In addition, we are calling and texting eligible members to help them register with UPMC for the vaccine. As opportunities to assist vaccine-eligible member arise, we are prepared with extra Member Services staff to make outreach calls.
You can help us by reminding your employees that we need to have their phone number and email address in order to reach them. This can easily be done by logging in to MyHealth OnLine and updating the preferences section. Members can also update their phone number and email address on the UPMC Health Plan mobile app.
Encouraging employees and their family members to get the vaccine
While many employers are actively considering whether they should mandate vaccines for employees, this decision involves complex legal, compliance, and human resources questions that are important to fully resolve before moving toward a mandate. Even if you aren’t considering a mandate for your employees, it’s important to address questions about the vaccine so that individuals can make an informed decision. To assist you in this effort, we have posted videos hosted by UPMC’s clinical experts that address many questions employees have about the vaccine, from pregnancy and fertility, to vaccine hesitancy with certain ethnic groups, and everything in between. You are welcome to view and share these videos with your employees. There are also vaccine FAQs for members available for review.
To keep up to date on COVID-19 and how it affects you, your employees, and your business, please visit the COVID-19 Resource Employer page, Virtual Events page and Employer OnLine to read updated FAQs and much more. Members can also visit UPMCHealthPlan.com and UPMC.com.