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California imposes vaccines on healthcare workers by September 30

In what officials called the first such requirement in the country, California on Thursday ordered healthcare workers across the state to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in early fall.

The new mandate applies to employees of hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, clinics, physician’s offices, hospice facilities, dialysis centers and most other healthcare facilities, and states that they complete their inoculation regimen by September 30.

“As we continue to see an increase in cases and hospitalizations due to the Delta variant of COVID-19, it is important that we protect vulnerable patients in these settings,” Dr Tomás Aragón, head of public health at the ‘State and Director of the Department of California. of public health, said in a statement. “Today’s action will also ensure that healthcare workers themselves are protected. Vaccines are how we are ending this pandemic. “

The state has also ordered hospitals, skilled nursing homes and intermediate care facilities to verify that visitors inside are either fully vaccinated or tested negative for the coronavirus within 72 hours of arrival.

It wasn’t until last week that Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that healthcare workers in California would soon either have to show proof of their immunization status or undergo regular testing.

Thursday’s order largely removes the testing option and allows only religious or medical exemptions limited to the vaccine requirement.

Exempt employees should be tested regularly – twice a week if they work in acute or long-term care facilities and once a week in other health facilities.

Unvaccinated employees should also wear a surgical mask or respirator, such as an N95, inside an establishment.

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