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Texas doesn't know vaccination rates inside nursing homes, per HHSC

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission stopped tracking nursing facility data due to COVID, according to an agency spokesperson.

AUSTIN, Texas — People in nursing homes were some of the first individuals to get the COVID-19 vaccine in Texas.

The KVUE Defenders tried to analyze State data to find out what percent of staff and residents have had the shot, but found that’s not information the Texas Health and Human Services Commission is tracking.

Data from HHSC show us so far, 59,949 nursing home residents have received their first dose of the vaccine, and 56,009 nursing home staff have also had the first dose.

Meanwhile, 41,423 assisted living facility residents have received their first dose, along with 29,416 staff inside those facilities.

Credit: KVUE

KVUE asked the State how many total residents and staff there are in Texas facilities, but it didn’t have an answer. That’s because HHSC doesn’t keep track of that information.

But one woman whose mom is at a nursing home outside Dallas told us she’s worried vaccine hesitancy among nursing home staff could still be putting residents at risk.

"Vaccine hesitancy is a real issue among staff members," Mary Nichols said. "So it is still staff members bringing that disease in."

A spokesperson for HHSC offered more clarification about why the State doesn't have that information readily available. 

"After looking further, the nursing facility data was put on hold due to COVID, which is why we do not have the data you’re seeking," HHSC press officer Helena Wright-Jones said in an email. 

The latest HHSC data from May 18 shows there were hardly any active cases of COVID-19 inside those facilities.

As of two weeks ago, 63 employees and 110 residents had active cases of the virus in nursing homes statewide.

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