Patton State Hospital on fast-track to vaccinate most sufferers and workers towards coronavirus – San Bernardino Solar
Patton State Hospital has begun vaccinating all consenting staff and patients with their second dose of the coronavirus vaccine in an attempt to contain a fast-spreading outbreak that killed 16 patients and infected 548.
Patton tops the state’s five psychiatric hospitals in numbers of patients infected with COVID-19 and is the second largest hospital in terms of patient deaths after Coalinga State Hospital. As of May 30, 2020, 16 patients have died of the novel coronavirus at the San Bernardino facility, while 20 have died in Coalinga, according to the Department of State Hospitals.
Last week, 66 patients in Patton – the largest of the state’s five psychiatric hospitals – were newly diagnosed with COVID-19, Patton executive director Janine Wallace in a statement presented to federal court on Tuesday, January 26 830 patients – 66.3% of the facility’s population – were submitted, and 52.3% of the 2,516 staff were vaccinated with the first dose of vaccine.
Staff received their second dose on Tuesday and patients will receive their second dose on Friday, Jan. 29, Wallace said in her statement.
During the outbreak, California nonprofit disability rights attorneys first filed a court order to move more than 300 high-risk patients to safer, non-congregational facilities until the outbreak was contained. U.S. District Court Judge Jesus G. Bernal then put Patton in the fast lane to vaccinate all of his consenting staff and patients, and to provide him with weekly status reports via telephone hearings.
However, the state’s task was not an easy one. More than 200 patients are unable to self-consent to vaccinations and have conservators to give permission. As of Friday, Jan. 22, 18 patient conservators refused to consent to the patients being vaccinated, but 150 conservators gave their consent, Wallace said in her court record. She said that of those 150 patients, 137 received their first dose of vaccine, and Patton is working to confirm the status of the remaining 13.
During a status conference Thursday, Bernal said he was happy with the state’s vaccination efforts to date.
“It seems like progress has been made at a steady pace,” said Bernal. However, he continued to press for more information on the number of patients who have not yet consented to vaccination or who have conditions that preclude vaccination.
Assistant Attorney General Lisa A. Tillman, who represents the Department of State Hospitals and Patton, told Bernal that she believed the vaccination rate for patients in the hospital was “well over 70%” on Thursday.
Pressured by Bernal about how many patients eligible for vaccination had not yet given consent to vaccination, Tillman knew nothing. Emphasis was placed on rolling up our sleeves and getting patients vaccinated rather than collecting data on non-consenting patients. Bernal said he understood but expressed concern that patients who disagreed with vaccinations were most likely to develop and spread the potentially fatal coronavirus, so he hoped these patients would be further informed and encouraged to make their decisions rethink.
Anne Hadreas, a disability rights attorney in California who represents patients, said during the hearing that she would like Patton to provide her information about what she’s done to educate disagreeable patients and staff about vaccinations.
“We heard that some people weren’t able to ask questions,” said Hadreas. “There is still a significant population that has not been vaccinated. There is still a risk. “
Availability of vaccines
She also asked questions about the availability of sufficient doses of vaccine to fully vaccinate patients, based on state numbers.
In her statement, Wallace said that on Jan. 22, Patton had a sufficient number of starting doses of the vaccine to vaccinate all of his consenting patients and staff.
Bernal directed lawyers on both sides to speak next week on the state of the outbreak and ongoing vaccination efforts. He was planning another status conference for February 9th.