Prior to the publication of the CMS COVID-19 vaccine requirement, Kettering Health announced it would require its employees, providers, volunteers, students, and business partners to become vaccinated for COVID-19. We made this decision because we believed then and we still firmly believe now that the available vaccines are highly effective at preventing serious illness, hospitalization, and death from the COVID-19 virus. Countless professional societies and many other hospital organizations agree that COVID-19 vaccine requirements are the right decision, and we too continue to believe vaccination is the best tool for us to fight COVID-19 and end this pandemic.
Yesterday, a federal court in Louisiana temporarily halted the COVID-19 vaccine requirement published by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) while it fully considers legal arguments in the case. If you have heard this news, you may be wondering what, if any, impact this decision has on Kettering Health’s COVID-19 vaccine requirement.
Kettering Health will continue to require the COVID-19 vaccine for employees, providers, volunteers, students and business partners, and we will maintain the deadlines we announced last month. Those who do not receive the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine (or a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccine) by December 5 will be issued a final written warning, unless they have been granted a medical or religious exemption or a temporary exemption because they have received monoclonal antibodies. Those who have not received all required doses of the COVID-19 vaccine by January 4 will be terminated. You must also submit your COVID-19 vaccine card to email@example.com by these dates to be considered compliant.
Yesterday’s court decision did not impact our ability – as an employer – to maintain our vaccine requirement and, after further consideration, we continue to strongly believe it is important for us to stay the course and require vaccination.
We continue to closely monitor our legal obligations as we navigate this global pandemic caused by the COVID-19 virus. Likewise, we continue to follow the science and data relative to the spread of COVID-19, its impact on the safety of our patients, employees and visitors, the proven safety and efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccines and the emergence of new COVID-19 variants.
If you have questions about your compliance with Kettering Health’s COVID-19 vaccine requirement, please speak with your leader.