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$1,000 bonuses being considered for county nursing home workers to get vaccinated

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McLean County Nursing Home

McLean County Nursing Home, 901 N. Main St., Normal, is shown. The county is providing employee incentives to get vaccinated. 

NORMAL — About 90 employees at the McLean County Nursing Home could see a one-time boost on their paychecks if they choose to get vaccinated against COVID-19. 

Funding for the financial incentive aimed at the roughly 40% of unvaccinated staffers comes from a $113,000 Illinois Department of Public Health grant the county board accepted Thursday. 

"Some people have very strong beliefs against being vaccinated, or might have health concerns or religious reasons why they would not get vaccinated and that is not what we are targeting," McLean County interim administrator Cassy Taylor said. "We're targeting people who have been waiting on more information, or were waiting on (federal Food and Drug Administration) approval or who are just still on the fence." 

An exact dollar amount per employee has not yet been determined, Taylor added, but the reward will likely range between a $500-$1,000 bonus on a pay check. 

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Staffers who have already been vaccinated are eligible for the incentive, as are those who provide proof of vaccination by Oct. 31. The amount rewarded will be the same for each group, Taylor said. 

Johnson & Johnson said Tuesday a second shot of its COVID-19 vaccine given about two months after the first increased its effectiveness to 94% in the United States against moderate to severe forms of the disease. Fred Katayama reports.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker, via an Aug. 26 executive order, already mandated the COVID-19 for healthcare workers including those in long-term care facilities; Taylor said that, for the county, adding a financial incentive on top of the mandate serves as an additional way to "encourage and contribute to a positive impact."

Data from IDPH's website current as of Sept. 17 shows 61.5% of county nursing home staffers are considered fully vaccinated, along with 84.1% of residents. 


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