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UVM Medical Center complies with federal worker vaccination mandate

Published: Nov. 11, 2021 at 4:24 PM EST
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - A federal vaccine mandate means health care workers at the UVM Medical Center must get a COVID shot or they will lose their jobs.

Under new guidance from the federal government, employees at health centers that receive Medicare and Medicaid funding must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Jan. 4, 2022.

Some hospitals in our area took this step already. New York State required health care workers, including those at CVPH in Plattsburgh, to get their first does by late September. Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire instituted a vaccine mandate on its own, requiring employees to be fully vaccinated by the end of September.

UVMMC officials say they will comply with the new Biden Administration mandate and all employees must have their first shot by Dec. 4 or they will lose their jobs.

According to the hospital, 283 employees have yet to provide vaccine documentation.

Kimberly Moore, a registered nurse at UVMMC, is not vaccinated and she feels she is not ready to get the vaccine right now. She says this is a harsh reality for her and others in the same situation.

“This doesn’t only affect nursing, this affects every department at UVMMC. And if you continue to lose employees, that will continue to affect morale on the floor-- you know what I mean-- safety,” Moore said. “I love what I do. It’s sad for me but I also have to stick up for what I believe in and I think most of the people feel that way, as well.”

In a statement, UVM Medical Center Spokesperson Neal Goswami said: “We rely on data research and science to keep our patients healthy and save lives. We have been clear about the fact that vaccination is how we protect each other and our patients from COVID-19 and end this pandemic and we intend to comply with this policy.”

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