Durham, NC Major hospital systems across North Carolina, including Durham-based Duke University Health System and Chapel Hill-based UNC Health, announced Thursday that all staff and doctors must be vaccinated to continue working there.
The steps follow the decision by the North Carolina Healthcare Association to endorse mandatory vaccinations for health care workers. The association represents 130 hospitals and health systems nationwide.
“Protecting patients, visitors and health workers from COVID-19 remains of paramount importance. Vaccinating hospital and health system workers against COVID-19 is critical to keeping patients safe by protecting them from infection and the Curb the spread of the virus. ” in health care facilities and among clinicians, patients and their families and friends, ”said a statement from the association.
Duke Health and UNC Health have set a September 21 deadline for employees to be fully vaccinated and employees are required to provide their supervisors with proof of vaccination. Anyone seeking medical or religious exemption from vaccination must apply by September 7th.
“DUHS is taking these steps because we are committed to keeping our patients, team members and the community safe and healthy,” said Dr. William Fulkerson, executive vice president of Duke Health, in a statement. “Our position is based on scientific data from infectious disease and public health experts in Duke and the US that show the vaccines are both safe and effective in significantly reducing COVID transmissions.”
Other hospital systems that require staff to be vaccinated include Cone Health, based in Greensboro, Novant Health, based in Winston-Salem, and Atrium Health, based in Charlotte. There was no immediate statement as to whether WakeMed would vaccinate its employees.
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