COVID-19 Survey Results – Essential Protective Equipment Eludes Providers

HCAOA’s latest COVID-19 survey showed almost half of member organizations are unable to obtain sufficient protective equipment for their workers. According to those organizations, 8% of front-line workers are refusing to work due to the threat of the virus, while just 2% of workers cannot work due to lack of child care.

The survey also showed that 90% of respondents have applied for the Paycheck Protection Program, and of those nearly 46% have been approved. Paid sick leave is another concern for many home care agencies—71% of agencies plan to offer it. Survey respondents indicated that 34% of agencies have had workers request leave, and on average, fewer than 10 workers per agency have requested time off.

Relative exposure to the virus is low. Nearly 57% of home care providers surveyed claimed that their caregivers had not reported exposure to COVID-19, and only 9% say that they have treated a patient with COVID-19.

“Our main objective in home care right now is to protect and prevent against the spread of COVID-19,” said Emma Dickison, President of HCAOA. “While early signs are promising, and our membership has banded together to the benefit of all in a difficult time, we need help from Congress and the Administration to continue providing one-on-one care that helps seniors safely age at home. This could be in many different forms, but the most useful way would be to authorize hazard pay for caregivers and priority access to health care, PPE and testing.”