Home Health News MaineHealth will require staff, including Maine Med employees, to be vaccinated by Oct. 1

MaineHealth will require staff, including Maine Med employees, to be vaccinated by Oct. 1

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MaineHealth, the state’s largest health care community, stated Tuesday that it will require all staff to be vaccinated in opposition to COVID-19 by Oct. 1, saying the mandate as virus case counts proceed to enhance in Maine.

“The vaccines are very effective, and are preventing hospitalizations and health complications with COVID-19. In addition, the vaccines are proven safe – we have a full year of data from the clinical trials and almost 200 million Americans have received a COVID-19 vaccination,” Dr. Dora Anne Mills, chief health enchancment officer of MaineHealth, stated in a written assertion. “To be consistent with our values and to protect our colleagues, families, patients and communities, we believe it is paramount that all care team members be vaccinated.”

Mills stated 83.8 percent of staff already have received their immunizations. MaineHealth, the mum or dad group of Maine Medical Center in Portland, has 23,000 staff in 9 hospitals, a behavioral health system, diagnostic labs and residential health businesses.

MaineHealth joins a rising checklist of suppliers which can be requiring workers vaccinations. Northern Light Health, which incorporates Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor and Mercy Hospital in Portland, stated Monday that it might require vaccinations for all workers as quickly because the U.S. Food and Drug Administration provides full approval to a number of vaccines. Millinocket Hospital grew to become the first Maine hospital to require staff vaccinations when it introduced its coverage, additionally predicated on FDA approval of a vaccine, final week.

MaineHealth has 23,000 staff in 9 hospitals, including Maine Medical Center in Portland, a behavioral health system, diagnostic labs and residential health businesses. Derek Davis/Staff Photographer

MaineHealth didn’t situation its vaccination requirement on full FDA approval of the vaccines. The community stated it might contemplate medical and non secular exemptions to the requirement.

Mills stated in an interview with the Press Herald on Tuesday that since medical trials and real-world utilization have confirmed that the vaccines are overwhelmingly secure and efficient, MaineHealth determined to mandate the vaccine no matter full FDA approval. The FDA might grant full approval by late summer time or early fall, however the actual timetable is unknown. Some hospital methods in different states are forging forward with vaccine mandates and never ready for full FDA approval as virus instances surge.

“We feel very confident in the safety and efficacy of the vaccines,” Mills stated. She stated the extra contagious delta variant is also spurring motion. “We need to act now to make sure patients and employees are protected.”

Mills stated a mandate is efficient, as proven by a 2020 requirement for MaineHealth staff to get a flu shot, which was adopted by a state flu shot mandate this yr for all health care employees.

“We lost very few employees when we implemented the flu shot mandate. What happens is people get vaccinated,” Mills stated.

Steven Michaud, president of the Maine Hospital Association, stated in a press release that “we fully support Millinocket, Northern Light and MaineHealth moving in this direction.”

“There will be many more to follow. MHA is actively discussing a statewide policy in this regard and will have something to say very soon. While we do not relish imposing on our unvaccinated employees, the health and safety of our patients trumps all other concerns,” Michaud stated. “We cannot have patients coming through our doors expecting to be healed and coming out with COVID. It’s simply unacceptable.”

The Maine State Nurses Association, a union that represents nurses at Maine Med and EMMC, launched a press release on Tuesday that stated “we strongly believe all eligible people should be vaccinated, while respecting the need for medical and religious accommodations.”

According to a survey revealed July 30 by The COVID States Project, which is a consortium of universities including Harvard, Northeastern and Rutgers, 66 p.c of Maine residents surveyed help necessary COVID-19 vaccinations, practically the identical as nationwide approval of 64 p.c.

Major employers exterior of health care are also beginning to mandate COVID-19 vaccinations for employment, including Walmart, Disney, Facebook, Google and Tyson Foods. In Maine, the University of Maine System is requiring vaccinations for college students and workers as soon as full FDA approval is granted. Several of the state’s non-public schools and universities even have established vaccination necessities for college students and workers.

Also, some eating places in Maine are beginning to require vaccination for indoor eating, including Little Giant on Danforth Street in Portland, the Portland Hunt & Alpine Club on Market Street and Crown Jewel on Great Diamond Island.

Meanwhile, Maine reported 255 new COVID-19 instances on Tuesday, a abstract of latest infections that have been detected during the last three days. There have been no extra deaths.

The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention does not report case numbers over the weekend, so Tuesday’s totals replicate instances reported on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

The new case numbers replicate rising charges of an infection in York, Somerset, Penobscot and Lincoln counties, sufficient to put these counties into the “substantial” transmission class the place the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends masks carrying indoors for all folks. Waldo County stays within the “high” transmission class, the place masks carrying is also beneficial.

Although the Maine CDC has adopted the federal mask-wearing advice, the company’s director, Dr. Nirav Shah, has indicated the state might rethink its help for the federal mask-wearing tips as a result of the transmission degree designations change so rapidly, complicated the general public.

Shah stated on Maine Public’s “Maine Calling” present on Monday that the system “whipsaws people.”

The seven-day common of every day new instances climbed to 93.9 on Tuesday, in contrast to 64.7 per week in the past and 20.7 a month in the past. Since the pandemic started, Maine has recorded 70,718 instances of COVID-19, and 900 deaths.

Maine hospitals reported 42 inpatients with COVID-19 on Tuesday, including 20 in important care beds.

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