Wealthy donors to a West Palm Beach, FL, nursing home and assisted living organization were offered early access to COVID-19 vaccinations, according to a report published Monday evening in the Washington Post.
The media outlet alleged that MorseLife Health System CEO Keith Myers sent personal letters to donors and called them directly to offer early access to COVID-19 vaccines that had been provided through the federal government’s Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program with CVS Health and Walgreens. The vaccines were intended only for long-term care residents and staff members.
The move may have violated national immunization guidelines, as well as state protocols, state officials told the Washington Post. They noted, however, that the rules around COVID-19 have not been very clearly laid out by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
MorseLife did not respond Wednesday to a McKnight’s Business Daily request for comments.
David Grabowski, Ph.D., a Harvard Medical School professor and nursing home researcher, told the media outlet that the vaccination of donors and facility board members seemed “irregular.”
“That certainly sounds inconsistent with what CDC and other administration officials had in mind for prioritizing residents and caregivers of nursing homes,” he said. “There’s a reason nursing home residents were prioritized” over the general population of seniors, “based on their physical and cognitive impairments,” he said.