Nebraska Governor Welcomes Nurses to Decide on Their Own. They are Recruiting!
In June, the CEO of Houston Methodist San Jacinto Hospital was quoted as saying “100% vaccination is more important than your individual freedom. Everyone of you is replaceable. If you don’t like what you’re doing you can leave and we will replace your spot.”
However, in September, when Liberty Counsel sent a demand letter to entire Methodist Health System in Texas, the hospital system backed down quick.
Methodist Health changed their tune and decided to allow some employees religious accommodations to its demand that all accept the experimental COVID-19 vaccines.
A Liberty Counsel’s letter informed Methodist they were directly violating several state and federal laws.
“For the first time in the history of the United States, an employer is forcing an employee to participate in an experimental vaccine trial as a condition for continued employment,” the lawsuit argued.
The lawsuit said the Methodist hospital “became the first major health care system in the country to force it [sic] employees to be injected with an experimental COVID-19 mRNA gene modification injection (‘experimental vaccine’) or be fired.”
“Methodist Hospital is forcing its employees to be human ‘guinea pigs’ as a condition for continued employment,” the lawsuit’s opening paragraph stated.
🔹At Houston Methodist, 153 employees either resigned during a two-week suspension period or were terminated for noncompliance.
🔹Jerry Jasper, CEO of Brownfield Regional Medical Center in Texas, says Biden’s mandates will cause “probably 20 to 25 percent of my staff will have to go away if that’s the case.”
The hospital services low-income and elderly people and are dependent on Medicare and Medicaid. Biden’s vaccine mandate covers all employees of hospitals that receive Medicare and Medicaid funding.
“It’s huge in our rural community as all the other rural communities,” says Jasper, speaking of the Medicaid funding stream. “We all have high poverty levels and stuff like that, so a lot of Medicaid usage in our communities and stuff like that.”
🔹“Well, it would be devastating for the community,” says Seminole Hospital District CEO Larry Gray also in Texas. “We have a large percentage of our revenue that comes from Medicare, Medicaid and those kinds of products.” The Seminole Hospital District operates an assisted living home, a healthcare center and a hospital.
Since the Texas Methodist Health System began terminating employees who elected not to take the experimental jabs, more hospital and healthcare workers have called the bluffs and are waiting to be fired. It’s backfiring on the hospitals nationwide.
Although New York has threatened to bring in foreigners as replacements, it has not deterred employees determined to refuse the controversial shots.
Former Gov. Andrew Cuomo had mandated that all healthcare workers in the state get a vaccine, employees at hospitals and long-term care facilities need to get their first dose by Sep. 27.
19 percent of New York’s hospital workers remained unvaccinated, according to state Health Department figures.
For nursing homes, the number was 18 percent as of Wednesday. After Monday, employers can fire unvaccinated workers who don’t have a “valid medical exemption” for getting the shots.
🔹Lewis County Health System, a single-hospital system in Lowville, N.Y., announced they will temporarily close its maternity unit after dozens of staff resigned over the state mandate. CEO Gerald Cayer has predicted an unsafe staffing shortage at the hospital by Sept. 24.
According to Cayer, 165 out of the hospital’s 464 employees have not been jabbed.
“We are not alone. There are thousands of positions that are open [in the northern part of the state] and now we have a challenge to work through, you know, with the vaccination mandate,” said Cayer.
🔹Eleven Olean (N.Y.) General Hospital workers resigned because of the state’s mandate, which requires healthcare workers at hospitals and nursing homes to receive their first vaccine dose by Sept. 27.
🔹LeadingAge nursing homes New York CEO Jim Clyne has also warned about staffing shortages due to the New York vaccine requirement.
“We want the state to make sure they understand that there could be emergencies where you have buildings full of elderly people who need care, without enough workers.”
New York CEOs are watching a pending federal lawsuit against the state for refusing to grant religious exemptions to healthcare workers. A federal judge has blocked the New York State Department of Health from enforcing the vaccine requirement.
“The vaccine mandate is suspended in operation to the extent that the DOH is barred from enforcing any requirement that employers deny religious exemptions from COVID-19 vaccination or that they revoke any exemptions employers already granted before the vaccine mandate issued,” Judge David Hurd wrote on Sept. 14. The temporary restraining order will remain in effect until at least Sept. 28, when there will be another hearing.
🔹Tidelands Health is facing at least one lawsuit after firing one of its employees for not complying with the Georgetown, S.C.-based system’s vaccine mandate.
🔹So is Charleston-based Medical University of South Carolina Health who fired five of its employees for not complying with its mandate.
🔹West Orange, N.J.-based RWJBarnabas Health will likely been in court soon. They fired six workers for not complying with its mandate.
🔹Yale New Haven (Conn.) Health said about 700 of its employees remain unvaccinated against COVID-19 and could eventually face termination if they fail to meet the system’s vaccination requirement. As of September 23, the employees have stood firm against the mandate.
The health system announced its vaccination mandate for employees June 30. The policy requires that employees be fully vaccinated or have a medical or religious exemption before Oct. 1. Those who do not comply will receive a verbal warning for noncompliance the week of Sept. 27, followed by a written warning if they are still not compliant the week of Oct. 4. Employees who are noncompliant the week of Oct. 11 will be suspended, and those who are not compliant as of Oct. 18 will be terminated.
Healthcare workers in Rhode Island who are not vaccinated against COVID-19 by Oct. 1 will be allowed to work beyond that date to prevent care quality from slipping, the state health department said Sept. 21.
“If there is a risk to quality of care, and an unvaccinated worker must continue to work beyond Oct. 1 to mitigate that risk, the employer has 30 days to ensure that role is fulfilled by a fully vaccinated healthcare worker,” Health Director Nicole Alexander-Scott, MD, said in a news release.
Rhode Island’s mandate covers state hospitals, the Rhode Island State Public Health Laboratories and the Veterans Home in Bristol, as well as licensed healthcare providers at all other state facilities. Workers who do not have an approved medical exemption must receive their final dose by Oct. 1 or face 75 calendar days of unpaid leave. Individuals not vaccinated by Dec. 15 will face progressive discipline, up to and including termination.
🔹61 employees resigned from their jobs at UNC Health, because of the Chapel Hill, N.C.-based system’s vaccination requirement. About 35 candidates also have declined job offers because of the vaccination policy.
“Our hope is as we get closer [to the deadline], the numbers will increase of individuals who are vaccinated, fewer individuals will leave and maybe, with a little luck, some of those who have resigned will reconsider.”
Nebraska welcomes unvaccinated healthcare workers
In Nebraska, Republican Gov. Pete Ricketts of Nebraska has approved job ads that highlight COVID-19 vaccines as optional.
During a press conference, Ricketts says the ads provide an extra recruiting tool to shore up the state’s long-standing nursing shortage and are not meant to target unvaccinated nurses specifically.
“We have a number of positions open at the state of Nebraska. We need nurses just like everybody else does,” Ricketts says. “We want to recruit them. We also heard from a lot of people when the hospitals made that announcement that they were very unhappy with their employers interfering with their personal health decisions. We want nurses to not leave the workforce, because we need them all.”
The governor says he is open to “further measures” to shore up staffing at hospitals, but will not approve a mandate for either face coverings or vaccines.
“If you go look at our advertisement, for example, we say, ‘while vaccines are encouraged, they’re not required,’” says the governor. “We need people to do this because it’s part of personal responsibility for themselves.”
Ricketts criticizes Biden for lack of communication with states, noting that since taking office, Biden has not participated in any of the weekly phone calls the White House has with the nation’s governors.
“The president should look at the data, and maybe the president should attend one of the weekly calls his administration has with all the governors – he’s not been on one yet since he’s been president – and maybe talk to some of the governors and ask them about what’s going on in their states because he appears to be pretty ignorant of what’s going on in places like Nebraska,” says Ricketts.
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